Apple Unveils iPad 2

first_imgWired’s Gadget Lab blog reports that Jobs said developers have earned more than $2 billion from app sales and Apple generated $9.5 billion in iPad revenue. Apple also designed a Smart Cover for the tablet ($39 for polyurethane or $69 for leather), which attaches with a self-aligning magnetic hinge and folds back to form a pedestal to prop up the iPad. iPad 2 models are available with AT&T or Verizon networks. Pricing is similar to the previous version: $499 for the 16GB wi-fi model, $599 for the 32GB, and $699 for the 64GB. Add the 3G and pricing jumps to $629, $729 and $829. The Verizon wi-fi/3G model will be available only in the U.S. The iPad 2 is scheduled to ship March 11. Apple simultaneously announced that Random House is making its full catalog of 17,000 ebooks available in the iBookstore, which, says the company, now offers content from 2,500 publishers. Apple unveiled the iPad 2 today. As a host of new tablet devices are making their way into the market, Apple needed to make a significant jump ahead in performance and functionality. Key upgrades include a 33 percent thinner design that makes the new tablet 15 percent lighter while keeping the same screen size. Customers can choose between black or white versions. The device ships with Apple’s dual-core A5 processor and the company’s latest mobile operating system, iOS 4.3. CPU speed is reportedly 2 times faster and graphics are rendered up to 9 times faster.According to Apple CEO Steve Jobs, the company has sold more than 15 million iPads so far, and the iPad 2 has taken on more interactive characteristics. The device has front and rear cameras, allowing traditional camera functionality along with the ability to use Apple’s video chat feature, FaceTime.iMovie and GarageBand apps, at $4.99 each, launched along with the new tablet, which allow users more media recording and editing capabilities-pushing the device into a content creation realm, not just a passive reading/watching experience. In a press event held today, Jobs pointed out that there are now more than 350,000 apps available with more than 65,000 that are native to the iPad.last_img read more

Braves ad blocking eases your computers memory use

first_img See it CNET may get a commission from retail offers. Mentioned Above Apple MacBook Air (128GB, Gray, 2018) Software Internet $1,099 Walmart Ad-blocking Brave also gives you a memory advantage, tests show. Stephen Shankland/CNET You might run an ad blocker in your browser to cut website clutter and keep companies from tracking you online. But the ad-blocking Brave browser has another reason to intervene: to free up memory and preserve your battery life.Detailed tests comparing Brave to Google’s dominant Chrome browser, with and without the Adblock Plus and uBlock Origin ad-blocking extensions, show that blocking ads can help reduce browsers’ ever-heavier use of precious computer memory on ad-heavy sites. Brave cuts memory use by 33 percent to 66 percent compared with ordinary Chrome, the company said Friday.Memory is a precious resource on laptops and phones, critical to everything a device does. As browsers have increased in power, becoming full-fledged software foundations instead of just vessels for digital documents, memory usage has soared. But browsers are getting more assertive about displaying websites in ways that are good for those of us looking at them, not necessarily those publishing them.Reader mode, tracking protection and ad blocking are some examples of browsers taking more control. Ad blocking helps not just with memory use, but also with power consumption, Brave has found.”The primary savings come from blocking resource-hungry ads and trackers that popular sites are teeming with, especially news ones,” Brave Chief Scientist Ben Livshits told CNET in an exclusive interview. “In our research, we show that Brave consumes 40 percent less battery than popular browsers like Chrome, Edge and Firefox thanks to a combination of bandwidth savings and lower CPU pressure.”Brave Software, founded by JavaScript inventor and former Mozilla Chief Executive Brendan Eich, got its start with an ad-blocking browser. But it isn’t opposed to ads. In fact, its business strategy relies on showing its own ads with its own technology designed to protect privacy and share some of the ad revenue with anyone using its browser. In its first phase, now in testing on personal computers, ads are shown in notifications that have no tracking scripts, animation, audio or video.Brave Chrome ad-blocking memory testBrave testing showed its browser using less memory usage than Google Chrome, with or without the AdBlock Plus and uBlock Origin ad blockers. The four comparisons show results for a higher-end MacBook (W1) and less powerful MacBook Air (W2) making network requests from the US and UK. The test was on ad-heavy news sites where ad blocking saves memory and cuts power use. Brave Software Reducing memory use is a priority in the browser world. Google Chrome — whose open-source Chromium project is the foundation for Brave, Opera, Vivaldi and soon Microsoft Edge — is working on memory reductions. And Firefox has a whole project called MemShrink, a good thing since security improvements mean it won’t be as economical.Memory is preciousNew trends make memory even more precious. Websites are piling on ever more JavaScript code, and smartphones don’t typically have as much memory as laptops even though web developers want to build more advanced websites.If you want to stick with Chrome, you can get most of Brave’s advantages with the uBlock Origin extension, Brave’s test showed. The AdBlock Plus extension actually increased memory use. The company measured memory usage with a number of websites, mostly news sites, on a powerful MacBook Pro, but it said its results were validated with an older, feebler MacBook Air.Adblock Plus by default shows ads that comply with its “acceptable ads” policy. Disabling that reduces memory usage to about the level of Chrome and uBlock Origin, Livshits said. Adblock Plus developer Eeyo didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. Google, Apple and Microsoft didn’t comment.”We’re very conscious of Firefox’s memory footprint, but efforts to decrease RAM must be balanced against features that make the browser faster, more responsive, and more secure,” Mozilla said in a statement. The upcoming Firefox 66, for example, will improve performance without requiring more memory. “We’ll continue to improve the resource efficiency of Firefox so it continues to run great for every user on whatever device they’re using,” Mozilla said.Advantage evaporates on sites without adsBrave’s memory advantages won’t carry over to websites that aren’t so heavily loaded with ads as those in the company’s test.”Pages that are clean, such as Gmail or Wikipedia, would currently use the same amount of memory as on Chrome,” Livshits said. And your mileage may vary: “Power users tend to see high memory use regardless of browser or ad blocker,” because browsers cache more information for quick access, he added.You could see websites get even easier on your hardware, too. Brave is working on a new SpeedReader mode — a more aggressive alternative to browser reader modes that show reduced-clutter views of websites. SpeedReader is designed to block ads and trackers long before they burden the computer, increasing website display speeds by a factor of 20. That’ll bring benefits for memory and power usage, too.”By focusing on allowing the least content possible for great content reading experience, it does not load any scripts (advertising or not) and even removes unimportant graphics,” Livshits said. “We haven’t run the exact same test to measure memory use in this scenario, but expect it to use a fraction of the memory of standard mode.” $1,199 Comments See It Apple News • Hands-on with the new Apple MacBook Air and MacBook Pro $899 Review • Apple MacBook Air review: Rebooted as a thinner, lighter, more expensive laptop Share your voice Preview • The MacBook Air is dead. Long live the MacBook Air 2 Tags Apple MacBook Air Microsoft Edge Advertising Brave browser Chrome Firefox Google See Itlast_img read more

Venezuelans protest as Guaido declares escalation of pressure

first_imgVenezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido, who many nations have recognised as the country`s rightful interim ruler, attends a rally against Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro`s government in Caracas, Venezuela, on 6 April 2019. Photo: ReutersVenezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido on Saturday launched what he promised will be a “definitive” escalation of pressure to force the country’s embattled leftist leader from office.Addressing a giant anti-government rally in Caracas, Guaido — whose claim to be interim president is supported by around 50 nations — kicked off what he called “Operation Liberty,” his plan to oust president Nicolas Maduro.”Everyone to the streets, let’s start the final phase of the end of the usurpation!” he told supporters, speaking from the back of a pickup truck.He called for a huge nationwide turnout on Wednesday, and urged his followers to redouble their efforts to maintain pressure in the streets.”The greatest escalation of pressure we have seen in our history” has begun, Guaido said.The call comes amid massive blackouts and the collapse of water supplies affecting the nation, further exacerbated a growing political crisis.The United States meanwhile has stiffened its economic sanctions against Maduro, and one top US official warned Venezuela’s military that it must protect the rights of peaceful protesters.At the rally, Guaido also warned Cuba’s president Miguel Diaz-Canel that the supply of subsidised Venezuelan oil to the Caribbean communist island nation was over.Venezuela`s president Nicolas Maduro gives a speech during a rally in support of his government in Caracas, Venezuela on 6 April 2019. Photo: ReutersVenezuela has been sending cheap oil to Cuba in exchange for labour from Cuban doctors and teachers, but Guaido said the oil was actually financing a Cuban intelligence group known as G2 that was cracking down on Maduro opponents in the Venezuelan military.”The exploitation of Venezuelan oil is over, so Mr Diaz-Canel… Venezuelan oil will not be used to submit and investigate our military officials” through the G2, he told the crowd.Pro-Guaido protests drew thousands in rallies across the country on Saturday.A pro-Maduro counter-demonstration in Caracas, with supporters dressed in red, drew a large crowd that gathered at the Miraflores presidential palace.”Together, permanently mobilised, let’s keep defending national peace and independence; no more interference!” Maduro tweeted.Later, he called upon Mexico and Uruguay to relaunch their proposal for dialogue to resolve the crisis without foreign intervention. The two countries had first introduced that idea in January.Two opposition deputies were detained at an anti-government demo in the western city of Maracaibo, but a few hours later Guaido announced that the two had been released.Elimar Diaz, a lawmaker who marched in Maracaibo, told AFP the protest there had encountered “brutal repression,” including tear gas canisters dropped from helicopters, the use of National Guard armoured vehicles and attacks by members of the pro-government militia, known as “colectivos.”Diaz said people in Maracaibo had gone “days without electricity” amid “inhumane rationing” by the government.Maduro has blamed US-backed sabotage for the massive blackouts that have deprived millions of power. The opposition blames a failure to maintain critical infrastructure.Abrams an ‘assassin’Facing intense pressure at home and abroad, the Maduro government has sought to weaken Guaido.The government has stripped his parliamentary immunity, authorised his prosecution for proclaiming himself acting president, and banned him from holding public office for 15 years.Guaido said earlier this week he feared that he could be abducted by government agents.Speaking to the pro-government Constitutional Assembly, Maduro’s top lieutenant Diosdado Cabello slammed the US point man on Venezuela, Elliott Abrams, as an “assassin.”Venezuela`s president Nicolas Maduro attends a rally in support of his government in Caracas, Venezuela on 6 April 2019. Photo: Reuters”It is Abrams who should be in prison, condemned in the United States for genocide in Central America,” said Cabello, referring to the US official’s controversial role in the Central American conflicts of the 1980s.Washington meanwhile kept up the international pressure on Maduro to step down.Vice president Mike Pence on Friday announced fresh sanctions against 34 vessels belonging to Venezuela’s state oil company and two companies that ship crude to Cuba.”This is only a first step,” US national security advisor John Bolton tweeted on Saturday in reference to the sanctions.He cautioned the Venezuelan defence minister in a separate tweet of the official’s “constitutional responsibility to protect innocent civilians who are peacefully demonstrating,” adding: “Do not let the Cubans or the ‘colectivos’ inflict violence against Venezuelan patriots.”Security Council to meetMaduro is supported by the Venezuelan military, China and Russia.Washington and its allies view the socialist president as illegitimate since he took office in January for a second term following elections widely seen as deeply flawed.Washington has convened a UN Security Council for Wednesday to discuss the Venezuelan crisis.Since Venezuela’s massive blackout of 7 March, the country has been subject to repeated power cuts, with electricity being rationed outside of Caracas.The blackouts have knocked out water supplies as well as transport and communications, forcing many people to trim their work days to six hours.last_img

Houston Fire Department Considering Virtual Reality Training

first_imgBrien Straw | Houston Public MediaHeadgear used for virtual reality training.Firefighters enter an office on the 24th floor. Smoke is billowing on the ceiling. Quickly, they close the office door to contain the fire, and help employees escape telling them to stay low to avoid the smoke.It seems real but it’s all created by a computer and seen by a trainee wearing goggles.Houston firefighters might be better prepared to go into burning buildings, or dealing with multiple other emergencies thanks to training using “virtual reality.”“We can start to develop products and platform that continuously judge the caliber of firefighter that we have in the Houston Fire Department. That we can augment our training based on the data that we get back. And that can, as somebody gets near the end of their career and has this wealth of knowledge, that we can capture that and pass it on,” said Patrick Hagan, a tech specialist with the Houston Fire Department.The fire department is working with Houston-based HTX labs which develops training for a variety of safety workers. CEO Scott Schneider said the goal is to develop muscle memory, and uses the Vegas shootings as an example.“They should looking for the guy who’s bringing, six, ten suitcases in over a couple days. Who hasn’t had room service, but they don’t know to look for it. We need to go in and provide training on things like that. And we can do that in virtual reality,” Schneider said.The Houston Fire Department hopes to start using V-R training in 2018. 00:00 /01:10 Listen To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code: X Sharelast_img read more

Mexican troops face civilian trial for 22 deaths

first_imgSeven Mexican soldiers being held in the June killings of 22 suspected criminals will be tried by a civilian judge, three of them for homicide, federal justice officials said Sunday.The troops were ordered arrested Friday by a Mexico state judge for dereliction of duty in the June 30 incident.Three of them are charged with aggravated homicide, and one of them with allowing a crime to take place. For now, the soldiers are jailed in a military detention center. In September, a witness said the gun battle itself had left only one dead, and the other 21 were killed in cold blood by the soldiers — including her 15-year-old daughter.The case adds to the shock surrounding a more recent case of 43 students who went missing in the southern town of Iguala in late September. They were allegedly taken away and killed by police linked to a drug cartel.If confirmed, the incident would mark one of the worst horrors in a drug war that has left more than 80,000 people dead since the conflict ramped up in 2006.last_img read more

The day of love made happening and trendier

first_imgDiamond rings, disclosed to be associated with divorce and other failed relationships, are sold at lower prices than rings without a negative history, the study into the re-sale of diamond engagement rings has revealed.That suggests previous academic research that claimed a single, clearly-defined market category is associated with a product’s success, is not the whole story, said the study’s researcher Anne Bowers, associate professor at Rotman School of Management University of Toronto in Canada. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’ The assumption there is that consumer expectations are fully met when an item cleanly fits into a category. “In some sense, these findings are the exact opposite,” Bowers noted.“Here’s a product that technically speaking, fits exactly the criteria for an engagement ring, and yet you still have problems,” Bowers said. Two parts to the study revealed similar findings. Analysis of data from 1.5 million eBay listings of diamond solitaire engagement rings over a 13-month period showed rings with no disclosed negative history were most likely to sell and at a higher price.  Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixRings, where sellers disclosed a divorce or other failed relationship – marked by comments such as “not going to happen,” or “right ring wrong guy”, were less successful.A separate attitudinal survey showed that even though participants believed a diamond ring from a divorce was most likely to be authentic – compared to the same one from a happy marriage or a jewellery store – it was the opposite when it came to how much they’ would be willing to pay for it.  The study was published in the journal Advances in Strategic Management. Along with this, gifting personalised goodies seems to be a new fad, with couples taking to “print” their love for their beloved this Valentine’s Day. Lovers are not only investing time and creativity to impress their loved one but are also ready to spend a lot to make them feel special and loved.“Valentine’s is the week of lovers and they leave no stone unturned to impress their bae (lover). People go for scrapbooks, love cards, t-shirts, explosion box and love jars to pamper their partners,” said Radhika Aggarwal, co-founder, Go Grab Gifts (G3).“Everyone wants to stand out from the crowd and there is no better way to show how much a person means to you than a unique personalised gift. In earlier days, we used to manually invest time and resources in personalising gifts for our loved ones and now we are enabling people to impress their love in minutes,” said Bipin Narang, co-founder and global CEO, Printvenue.“Our biggest consumers are people whom other printers/sellers find unprofitable. We provide our consumers the choice to order single quantity, at world-class quality, and at affordable pricing,” said Narang.“In the last one year, our business has grown significantly as more customers are discovering the convenience, choice and quality,” he said.Accoring to Narang, the current market size was close to $20 billion and around 5-10 per cent of the total market is addressable to Printvenue.Printvenue offers over 600 products to customise and thousands of design templates to choose from so that people can express love uniquely in as less as Rs 200.“The joy of seeing your loved one appreciate the effort behind your personalised gift has to be experienced because the efforts put in personalising goodies show how much a person means to you,” said Aggarwal.According to the survey, men clearly understand what women want and are planning to gift what women desire.Since Valentine’s Day, this year, is on a Sunday, 33 per cent respondents were planning to relax at home, while only 16 per cent were planning a trip.While most people resort to conventional romantic dinners to celebrate Valentine’s Day, the more adventurous choose to take their beloved on a helicopter ride, said a recently conducted study.According to the survey by deals platform Nearbuy of about 3,000 people, “45 per cent of the respondents opted for the option of taking their partners on romantic dinners, 39 per cent preferred to give a personalised gift and about 18 per cent people chose to take their special someones on a helicopter ride!” However, the survey showed that most people preferred to stick to a budget ranging anything between Rs3000 to Rs 5000 and not splurge mindlessly on the occasion. While 40 per cent Indians are willing to fork out an average of Rs 3,000, just about 10 per cent would go over the Rs 5000 bracket to buy presents for their partners. “People today are ready to spend and are yet not spend thrift when it comes to Valentine’s. They are online-savvy and are always on a look-out for great offers,” said Ankur Warikoo, CEO and Co-founder, Nearbuy.last_img read more