Archive for June 23rd, 2012

FB to warn if mob-apps pull users’ information

LONDON: Social networking giant Facebook has become the seventh company to agree to give people advance warning if its mobile applications pulls users’ personal information from tablet computers and cell phones.

The agreement requires mobile apps seeking to collect personal information to display their privacy policies before their app is installed on a device.

California Attorney General Kamala D. Harris said that the agreement includes Facebook’s own applications, as well as those made by third parties in its recently launched App Center.

According to CBS News, Facebook said it incorporated the principles of the privacy agreement when it was designing its App Center.

The other six companies that have signed the agreement are Apple, Google, Amazon, Microsoft, Research in Motion and Hewlett-Packard.

“We are delighted that Facebook has joined Amazon, Apple, Google, Hewlett-Packard, Microsoft, and Research in Motion to provide consumers with greater control and information about how their personal data is used,” Harris said.

“We need to protect privacy while we foster innovation,” he added.

Meanwhile, Facebook will now also allow its users to edit their comments on the website.

Users would be allowed to edit their comments by clicking on the edit option, which appears in the form of a small pencil icon on the right side of the comment, following which a drop-down menu will appear, with the option to edit the comment as well as the option to delete it entirely.

According to ABC News, the Facebook site will also be “showing the editing history for a comment so that subsequent commenters or likers have the full context of the conversation” which would allow commenters to see the history of the conversation.

The editing ability on the social site went live on Thursday, and will be gradually rolling out to all users over the next few days.

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Nintendo’s 8-bit Summer on 3DS eShop has these eight classics

Nintendo has dubbed July the “8-bit Summer,” and plans to launch eight Virtual Console games for the 3DS eShop next month, beginning July 5 with The Legend of Zelda . Kirby’s Pinball Land and The Sword of Hope 2 will hit on July 12, Kid Icarus: Of Myths and Monsters and Tumblepop will land on July 19 and Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3 will arrive on July 19. Nintendo is also sending Sonic Blast and Sonic Labyrinth to the eShop during its 8-bit Summer. If you can’t remember what these games look like in action, the above video should provide a handy reminder.

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Turn Your iPhone into a Quality Sound System

This luxury comes with a price, however. At around $650, this case is not within the budget of the average user. If you can afford it, however, it is well worth the price, especially if you are a true lover of music. In fact, you can offset the price by considering how much money you will save by not needing to buy a professional sound system. In short, the VAMP is an amazing case/sound system for your iPhone 4 or 4S. It isn’t cheap, but this is truly a matter of getting what you pay for.

Almost everyone enjoys listening to his or her favorite tunes on the iPhone. For most people, the sound is just fine as it is. For a true music lover, however, nothing but the smooth, rich sound of a quality sound system will scratch that itch. But it is impossible to get that quality of sound from the iPhone. Or is it? Actually, if you are willing to buy some accessories, there is no reason why you can’t turn your iPhone into a supreme sound system for rocking out to your favorite music anytime.

 

Until recently, there have been few options for improving the sound quality of iOS devices, and users have been limited to buying really good headphones or trying to tweak the quality of the individual sound files. No more, however, thanks to V-MODA. Already popular for the Crossfade LP headphones, V-MODA just revved up the game with VAMP. VAMP is a fantastic case for the iPhone 4 and 4s that includes a built-in amp, a battery pack, and a digital to analog converter. Music lovers rejoice!

 

VAMP does its thing by completely bypassing the internal digital to analog converter of the iPhone. It extracts the audio signal from the iPhone and coverts it to analog with its own DAC converter. It also completely bypasses the iPhone’s amp in favor of its much better 150 mW x 2 amp. The VAMP’s built-in amp is five times as powerful as that of the iPhone, and it is specifically designed for use with professional headphones. VAMP allows users to choose from two modes for listening. One is VQ mode, which sounds somewhat like a 3D soundstage and offers increased treble and tighter base. The other is PURE mode, which plays back in original form.

 

Users can adjust the level of the output through a hi/lo gain switch and a volume knob. Digital output is also available to other devices through an optical output, with a promised signal/noise ratio of more than 95 dB and less than .04% distortion.

 

VAMP also functions as an exceptional case. It is made of aircraft-grade metal in a brushed finish and  boasts a silicone shield that absorbs shock and protects the iPhone effectively. It includes a lithium-ion battery that allows you to enjoy as many of eight hours of playback and that can double the life of your iPhone battery by flipping a switch.

Dan D. is a writer for BestOnlineCollege.com. If you are interested in learning more about technology, and getting your education and the top schools, you can take a look at this site today.

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Cyber Bullying On Social Networking Sites: Can It Be Stopped?

Cyber Bullying On Social Networking Sites: Can It Be Stopped?

Social networking sites, like Facebook, MySpace, YouTube and Twitter, has dramatically increased in popularity over the past few years. Such sites have made this world a much smaller place. It is now possible for us to connect with the friends we haven’t seen for several years and family members who live abroad. It is even possible for professionals to connect with other professionals, which is very helpful when it comes to business.

However good this is, there is one major drawback: nothing is private. Everyone can see what you post on Facebook or Twitter. The people who run and operate Facebook are always seeking new ways to make the social networking site more open. This presents a problem for people who want to make their account on Facebook more private. No longer does anyone have any control over their privacy settings. Facebook also does not have an age restriction. Increasingly, teens and children are creating accounts on Facebook.

What does this all have to do with cyber bullying?

Let’s face it, we live in an age that is dominated by the internet. The internet has provided adults and children alike with the opportunity to connect with other people. When children and teens are not at school, they like to chat with their friends on Facebook just as much as adults enjoy talking to each other on Facebook. Unlike adults though, teens and children cannot differentiate  an appropriate comment and photo from one that is not appropriate until they learn the hard way. Sadly, the internet is no different than real life. People will criticize, berate and bully individuals for posting something they deem inappropriate or simply different.

I recently read an article, written by Sarah Perez, on Read Write Web. She has included some disturbing facts from Amanda’s slideshow presentation on SlideShare.

– About 38% of girls have reported some form of online harassment.

– 59% of harassment comes from other minors, which makes up a majority of people involved–directly or indirectly–with the cyber bullying.

These statistics were published in 2010–more than one year ago–yet they are very worrisome. They also show that social networking sites, like Facebook and MySpace offer no recourse for the victims of cyber bullying.

Can Cyber Bullying Be Stopped?

If people would put their energies in the right places, they can stop cyber bullying. Parents and teachers should teach children the difference between what is appropriate and what is inappropriate. They should also explain to their children what makes something wrong and why that certain behavior is destructive, not only to themselves but to others as well. Children and teens who are being harassed by peers online should be advised to keep a printed record of the malicious comments, but then delete their personal accounts. They should also be encouraged to tell a trusted adult about the ongoing harassment. When reporting the abuse, they should show the record as proof because that will provide for evidence which is needed in an intervention.

If people continue to confront the issue of cyber bullying, but in a non-violent manner, then cyber bullying will eventually cease to exist.

Deanna Proach writes for discounts.ca, a website that specializes in promotional codes. She also authored two novels: Day of Revenge (Inkwater Press) and To be Maria (PULSE, release date not yet known).

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Google will allow Motorola Mobility its own space

SAN FRANCISCO: Google intends to allow its newly acquired Motorola Mobility to keep its autonomy as it battles in the hotly contested smartphone market, executives said on Thursday.

Google chief finance officer Patrick Pichette told the company’s annual shareholder meeting that there is unlikely to be a integration of the mobile products firm.

“It’s important it stays on its own battlefield,” he said. “We are not integrating Motorola with Google, we’re making sure it has everything it needs to win in its own space. You shouldn’t expect a full integration of the two companies.”

He added that the mobile products firm has “fantastic assets that need to be reset, reprioritized… and in that context think of Google in a way taking Motorola private.”

Google chairman Eric Schmidt said of the deal: “We bought Motorola for the sum of the patents, the products, the people, the innovation.”

Google completed the $12.9 billion deal last month for Motorola Mobility, a key manufacturer of smartphones and other devices that puts the Internet giant in head-to-head competition with Apple.

The completion of the deal dubbed “Googorola” follows approval by Chinese, US and European regulators, amid concerns on restrictions for Android, a Google-created free operating system for mobile devices.

Conditions from China’s Ministry of Commerce included Google keeping its Android software for smartphones and tablet computers free and open for at least five years.

Regulators in the United States and elsewhere have stressed that they will be watching to make sure that the Mountain View, California-based company does not use Motorola Mobility to obtain an unfair advantage in the market.

Google acquires 17,000 patents with the purchase of Motorola Mobility and has been strengthening its patent portfolio in the fight for dominance in the booming smartphone and tablet market.

Motorola Mobility was created in 2011 when US-based Motorola Inc. split the company into a mobile devices unit on the one hand, and a government and public safety division known as Motorola Solutions on the other.

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Taiwan’s Mediatek offers to buy rival Mstar

TAIPEI: Taiwanese chip designer Mediatek said on Friday that it had offered to buy rival Mstar Semiconductor, the latest companies to join forces in the fast-growing yet capital-intensive and competitive semiconductor industry.

MediaTek is offering 0.794 of its own shares and NT$1 in cash for every MStar share. It plans to acquire 40 percent to 48 percent of MStar’s outstanding shares through the offer and will at a later date move to acquire the rest of the company.

Both firms are designers of chips for wireless and multimedia applications.

“Facing intense worldwide competition and fast-changing market dynamics, we believe that the combined company will be in a strong position to compete and will further elevate MediaTek’s global competitiveness,” MediaTek Chairman M.K. Tsai said in a statement.

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