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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Blackberry Outage Finally Explained (PIC)


Confirmed: Steve Jobs Worked on Apple Until His Last Day

masayoshi on jobs As one might expect, following the death of Steve Jobs, many rumors and legends have taken on a life of their own. The most recent whispers are related to the notion, proffered by Rodman & Renshaw analyst Ashok Kumar in a recent research note, that Jobs worked on next year's iPhone 5. But while many tend to take the word of analysts with a grain of salt, especially when it comes to the hyper-secretive Steve Jobs, Apple partner Masayoshi Son, CEO of Softbank, recently recounted an anecdote that appears to confirm this speculation.

During an interview conducted last weekend by the U.S. Ambassador to Japan John Roos, Son talked about his relationship to Apple and Jobs. Son revealed an interesting series of events during the launch of the iPhone 4S.

Son said, "I visited Apple for the announcement of the iPhone 4S [at Apple headquarters in Cupertino, California]. When I was having a meeting with Tim Cook, he said, 'Oh Masa, sorry I have to quit our meeting.' I said, 'Where are you going?' He said, 'My boss is calling me.' That was the day of the announcement of the iPhone 4S. He said that Steve is calling me because he wants to talk about their next product. And the next day, he died."

Recounting the episode, Son was visible touched by the Apple co-founder's passion and drive. He went on to say, "Even one day before he passed away, the first subject he wanted to call Tim Cook about…he wanted to talk about the next product… That's the kind of spirit a true entrepreneur would continue to have until they die. He was very sick, very ill. But the announcement of their newest product made him live longer. Physically he could have died much earlier. But his passion, his love for his own company and dream, about the next products, that made him energized."

Son didn't elaborate on which product Jobs discussed with Cook, but given this new information, the speculation that next year's iPhone 5 will be Jobs' final master stroke of product innovation now seems far more credible. You can check out the video here:

$3 million luxury camper is a 40′ mobile mansion

Austrian company Marchi Mobile announces luxury mobile home Elemment Palazzo

The Chevy Corvette car and speedboat hybrid might be the slickest amphibious vehicle on the planet, but when it comes to campers, nothing compares to the luxury the Elemment Palazzo offers. The mere mention of campers and RVs invokes images of cramped living quarters that can house only your essentials. But the Elemment Palazzo with its lavish fixture and ornate designs obliterates that notion completely. As it should, what with a coronary-inducing price tag of $3 million.

Austrian company Marchi Mobile designed Palazzo as part of its Elemment line of luxury vehicles that very visibly displays the trappings of wealth. You'll see in Palazzo what you never thought you'd see inside an RV. Master bedroom with an adjoining bathroom? Check. Leather interior? Check. Rainfall shower, fireplace, and 40" TVs? Check, check, check.

High-class bar area

Impressive enough as it is, it doesn't end there — the 40' long Palazzo also has a pop-out bar replete with a skylight and underfloor heating that you can activate by pushing a single button. The bar adds 80% more room to the camper's original 430 square feet floor space. When it comes to the exterior side of things, you may or may not be glad to know (depending on how you feel about it) that the Palazzo is covered in glow-in-the-dark paint.

Luxurious sleeping quarters

The 20-ton Palazzo can reach speeds of 93 mph, and uses 20% less fuel than vehicles of comparable size due to its aerodynamic design. The designers at Marchi Mobile say Palazzo is completely customizable, and if you have more money to spare, they'd welcome any outrageous modifications, going as far as to cover it in diamonds.

[via Daily Mail]
This article was written by Mariella Moon and originally appeared on Tecca

Super clever Jack Russell dog exercising himself

Uploaded by on Oct 12, 2011
Super clever Jack Russell dog plays fetch with himself up and down some steps in London, UK. The dogs name is Sid Russell. Sid drops a ball at the top of the steps, chases it as it drops, takes it back to the top then lets go again. Sid really enjoys doing this!

Sid is owned Roland Muldoon.

Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich now official, includes revamped design, enhancements galore

Google has taken the stage in Hong Kong to make the next version of Android OS, nicknamed Ice Cream Sandwich, a thing of reality. Better known as Android 4.0, the update offers a massive redesign to the user interface and adds a plethora of new features. Some of the highlights include an NFC-enabled feature called Android Beam, offline search in Gmail, new lock screen features and a fancy unlocking method called "Face Unlock," which uses facial recognition to ensure strangers can't use your phone without permission. Ice Cream Sandwich also includes enhancements in almost every native app within Android itself. The SDK is already available for Android 4.0, and the update itself will make its first public appearance on the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, also unveiled tonight. After the break, we'll cover all of the nitty gritty details, along with some excellent screenshots below. So come along, why won't you?
Here's some of the enhancements found in Ice Cream Sandwich:
  • Option to use virtual buttons in the UI, instead of taking up capacitive touch buttons
  • Widgets are in a new tab, listed in a similar list to apps
  • Folders are much easier to create, with a drag-and-drop style similar to iOS
  • A customizable launcher
  • New phone app with visual voicemail functionality that lets you speed up or slow down voicemail messages
  • Pinch-to-zoom functionality in the calendar
  • Gmail has offline search, a two-line preview, and new action bar at the bottom
  • Swipe left or right to switch between Gmail conversations
  • Integrated screenshot capture by holding power and volume down buttons
  • Improved error correction on the keyboard
  • Ability to access apps directly from lock screen (similar to HTC Sense 3.x)
  • Improved copy and paste
  • Better voice integration
  • Face Unlock, a facial recognition service
  • New tabbed web browser, allowing up to 16 tabs
  • Browser now automatically syncs your Chrome bookmarks
  • Modern "Roboto" font
  • Data Usage section in settings lets you set warnings when you reach a certain amount of use and disabling data when you go over your limit
  • Ability to kill off apps that are using data in the background
  • Camera app: zero shutter lag, time lapse settings, zoom while recording
  • Built-in photo editor
  • New gallery layout, organized by location and person
  • Refreshed people app with social network integration, status updates and hi-res images
  • Android Beam, a NFC feature that lets you exchange websites, contact info, directions, YouTube, etc.
  • Don't like some of those preloaded carrier apps? Disable 'em. Android Engineer Dan Morrill mentions that, among other new features, any app can be disabled, and while it will still take up space in ROM, it won't be snatching any of your precious resources or clock cycles again if you don't want it to.

Five Cheeseball Disney Promo Videos

Disneyland is pushing 60 years old and, like most people nearing that milestone, the park has had its fair share of cheeseball moments over the past six decades.

More specifically I'm talking about Disney's long history of promotional videos they produce when promoting a new park, attraction or event.

Check out five of Disney's cheesiest promo videos after the jump.

5. Space Mountain

Space Mountain debuted in 1977 in the park and, according to this video that announced the attraction's arrival, so did horrible hairdos and a terrible sense of fashion.

4. Disneyland Main Street Electrical Parade
Is this a bad acid trip or a trailer for a slasher film? Neither! But this 1986 promo for Disneyland's Main Street Electrical Parade sure feels like a little bit of both. "Out of the darkness it will come... and it will make your eyes melt out of their sockets before it eats your brain!"

3. A Day at Disneyland (Part 1)

Created in early nineties for people who couldn't afford camcorders, this souvenir video allows viewers to watch costumed characters ride the attractions from the comfort of their own home. And hey, buying this video is way cheaper than flying your family of four to California to go to the actual park! Below is just the first ten minutes of the half-hour long video, which begs the question: If you can blow a half hour of your day watching this crap, what in the hell is wrong with you?

2. Grad Night Promo

Created in 1996 to promote the park's annual event for graduating seniors, this promo video reeks of middle-aged adults trying to appeal to what they think high school students are "down with, dude!" They've got hip-hop! They've got alternative! They've got fucking rollerblades! And they have 30-year-old actors who last roamed the halls of a high school when Ronald Reagan was president!

1. Splash Mountain Rap

Holy. Shit. Balls. This thing was supposedly produced in the nineties, which I guess is almost accurate considering the ride debuted in the park on July 17, 1989, but if this video doesn't look like the eighties barfed all over it I don't know what does. This "music video" features actor Scott Valentine (Mallory's boyfriend Nick from Family Ties) as he raps (HE RAPS?!?) about the new attraction. Holy. Shit. Balls. Again. (High-five to my friend Shawn for bringing this one to my attention.)

Motorola Unveils Droid Razr, World’s Thinnest Smartphone

Motorola has unveiled its newest smartphone, the Droid Razr, calling it the “world’s thinnest 4G smartphone.”

The phone is 7.1mm thin, features an 8 MP rear camera, and has a 1.2 GHz processor and 1 GB of RAM. It has a 4.3-inch super AMOLED advanced QHD display and is powered by Android Gingerbread.

“Droid Razr by Motorola combines style, performance and the power of Verizon Wireless’s 4G LTE network into one innovative device,” said Marni Walden, vice president and chief marketing officer for Verizon Wireless, in a statement. “These are two iconic brands that separately symbolize the best technology available today. The combination will provide an unsurpassed wireless experience for customers.”
SEE ALSO: Motorola Droid Razr: First Impressions [PICS & VIDEO]
The device will be available in early November for $299.99 with a new two-year Verizon contract.
Motorola revealed the new phone at a joint event with Verizon in New York City Tuesday afternoon. You can follow along with the rest of the event here.

Polyester Disasters: Bad Retro Fashions

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Is it actually possible these styles were ever in fashion? Here’s a round-up of some vintage polyester rich fashions from the 1970′s: styles that would never make the cut on the city streets (or even country roads) of today. With so many old fashions coming back to life, could they come back into style soon? It’s a frightening thought.

The Future of IMAX is… Lasers!

laser_eye.jpgBy the year 2013, IMAX theaters and Kodak will bring digital theatrical projection to the next level with a single, exciting, futuristic-sounding concept: LASERS! The companies announced their partnership today in a statement promising advances in quality projection in large-scale IMAX and dome theaters in the coming years to benefit moviegoers, theaters, and investors. Win-win-win?
“This Kodak intellectual property is truly cutting edge,” said IMAX CEO Richard L. Gelfond in a press release today, “and will be used by IMAX’s esteemed Technology Group to enhance the cinematic experience for consumers, enable the application of digital technology in our larger and institutional theatres, and make being in business with IMAX even easier and more profitable.”
IMAX is exclusively licensing over 50 Kodak laser and digital projection-related patents and technologies that promise to enhance the visual experience and light quality of the IMAX experience, as well as make content distribution within the IMAX network easier.
“Because this technology produces the deepest blacks, and the brightest 3D of any system demonstrated to date,” said Kim Snyder of Eastman Kodak Company, “it will truly make the movies more exciting for consumers, and that creates a strong value proposition for the studios and exhibitors as well.”
Meanwhile, Kodak has in recent years been developing laser projection technology, which previously fell under separate laser-specific regulations. In February, the company got the go-ahead from the FDA to bring their technology to cinema theaters (vs. specialized laser shows, etc.). According to Kodak’s website, the features of their Laser Projection Technology include combined 2-D and 3-D projection,” 3-D images “twice as bright” as those used in standard industry practice, and 2K resolution scalable to 4K. In a statement last spring, Kodak explained the initiative:
Typically, digital projection systems using high power lasers fall under the definition of a “demonstration laser” and must follow existing regulations for conventional laser projectors, such as those used in laser light show displays. Kodak has been working in conjunction with laser safety consultants and the FDA to address potential safety issues.

KODAK Laser Projection Technology promises to bring vastly improved image quality to theater screens, including significantly brighter 3D viewing, and to dramatically reduce costs to digital projection in cinemas through the innovative use of long-life lasers, lower-cost optics and more efficient energy usage.
Could lasers be the key to the future of theatrical moviegoing? Will it make the sucky peripheral IMAX seats you get when you arrive late suck any less? Would Jim Cameron approve? Stay tuned…
[Press release, Kodak]

Meet the robot who plays piano faster than any human - mind you, he does have 19 fingers


Meet Teotronico. 
He's really good at playing the piano - but then he does have 19 fingers.

Robotic hand technology is evolving rapidly and Teotronico's extra digits enable him to play the piano faster than any human could.

He can also sing and accompany himself on the drum and judge how well his musical ability is going down with the punters.

Scroll down for video

Play it again Sam: He may look like something out of a Tim Burton movie, but Teotronico is really good at playing piano
Play it again Sam: He may look like something out of a Tim Burton movie, but Teotronico is really good at playing piano

...Of course this could be down to him having 19 fingers, which inventor, Matteo Suzzi, left, says is the perfect number to cover any melody or song and play faster than a human
...Of course this could be down to him having 19 fingers, which inventor, Matteo Suzzi, left, says is the perfect number to cover any melody or song and play faster than a human

Teotronico is the only robot in the world able to do all those things at the same time.
Inventor Matteo Suzzi says the robot has 19 fingers because it is the perfect number to cover any melody or song. He also plays faster than any human.

The rhythmic bot can even distinguish between the speed of key change and play various notes together.

He also has video cameras installed in his eyes which allow him to 'see' and interact with those around him.

Matteo, from Imola, Italy said Teotronica cost over £3000 and took over four years to create.

The 34-year-old said: 'I've always had a passion for robots and robotics. I was really excited when I discovered you could create an independent robot that could play any
tune or composition.

'Having 19 fingers gives the robot a better execution speed, making him faster than a human.

'His left hand covers the lower notes, the right hand covers the melodic line and he has an extra finger on the left hand.

'He is a great pianist because he has almost double the number of fingers that a human has and he can provide greater pressure to the keys.

'He sings recorded files in his system and uses speech recognition and facial expressions to interact with his audience.

'He's performed at a number of private parties and is a hit with the guests. We're hoping he can revolutionise the music industry.'

Let me entertain you: Teotronica cost over £3,000 and took over four years to create
Let me entertain you: Teotronica cost over £3,000 and took over four years to create

Ten technology facts about the London Olympics


Billions have been invested in an attempt to make sure the London games run smoothly.

London 2012 Olympics: OPLC is back to square one with a problem all of its own making
The Olympics will be the biggest event ever hosted in Britain Photo: AP
Atos, one of the tech firms providing the huge power, communications and computing and infrastructure that will be crucial to the games' success has compiled a list of ten technology facts:
1. Over four billion of us are expected to tune in to watch our favourite athletes perform on TV – over two thirds of the world's population.
2. The Technology Operations Centre unveiled this week is the technology ‘Mission Control’ for London 2012 – it oversees the results, IT security, power and telecommunications for all 94 Olympic venues.
3. The Technology Operations Centre will be staffed by 450 people working 24/7 under one roof to keep all 94 Olympic competition and non-competition venues running smoothly.

4. 200,000 hours - or 23.5 years’ - worth of testing will be carried out on the IT systems before the games start, to simulate and prepare for every possible scenario. To put that in perspective, that’s the equivalent of 8,333 days’ work.
5. For the first time ever, commentators will have touch-screen Commentator Information System technology for every single Olympic Games sports - delivering real-time results high speed. Ten more sports have been added to the system compared to Beijing 2008. London 2012 will also be the first Summer Paralympic Games to use this Commentator Information System, with five sports added to the system.

6. If the British summer is playing up, we could take a tip from the Chinese – who shot weather rockets into the sky to stop rain clouds soaking the audience and spoiling the party at the Opening Ceremony!

7. London 2012 will be a greener, more sustainable Olympic Games. A special plant will supply electricity, heat and chilled water to the London 2012 Olympic Park using technology which produces 33 per cent lower CO2 emissions than from the electricity grid.

8. The Technology Operations Centre at London 2012 will also be able to process 30 per cent more results data than Beijing 2008 to meet the rapidly increasing demands of fans for information anytime and everywhere.

9. You can leave the cash at home! London 2012 offers people the chance to attend without cash but still pay, by using ‘contactless’ cards which will be swiped over a reader like an Oyster card to make payments. More than 5,000 retailers so far have signed up.

10. With 8.5 billion PCs, smart phones and tablets predicted to be connected to the internet by 2012, the London games are set to be the biggest ever online.