Geek News: Latest Technology, Product Reviews, Gadgets and Tech Podcast News for Geeks


Archive for April, 2013

GNC-2013-04-25 #854 100% Engaged

Posted by geeknews at 12:58 AM on April 26, 2013

My activity buffer remains at 100% engaged, with the news rocking today I have a pile of content to go through sit back and listen in to GNC.

Support our Show Sponsor:
32% off your new order @ GoDaddy: go32off1
$1.00 / mo WordPress Hosting with a free domain! Promo Code: press4
$1.00 / mo Economy Hosting with a free domain! Promo Code: geeks12
GoDaddy Promo Codes always save you money, check out my Promo Codes Today

Subscribe Today: Audio | Video (HD) | Mobile Video | iTunes | Zune

Download the Audio Show File

Follow me on Google+
Follow @geeknews on Twitter
Geek News Central Facebook Page
Show Hotline 24/7 1-619-342-7365 or e-mail geeknews@gmail.com

Links to articles covered in this Podcast on the GNC Show Notes Page [Click Me]

PlayPlay

Layoffs and Reorganizing at Electronic Arts

Posted by JenThorpe at 9:52 PM on April 25, 2013

EA Logo Just when you think you’ve heard the last bit of bad news from Electronic Arts (EA), more is revealed. On March 18, 2013, CEO John Riccitello resigned from the company. His position was temporarily taken over by Chairman Larry Probst, who was a previous EA chief executive.

Riccitello’s resignation was probably not a huge surprise to many. EA has had a history of difficulties with their games. In June of 2012, Star Wars The Old Republic (SWTOR) went “free to play”. Shortly after that, EA stopped reporting the number of subscribers the game had (which is never a good sign). Earlier this year, EA gained a lot of negative attention after the fiasco that followed the launch of SimCity. Many gamers were frustrated by the problems with the game, and felt that EA took too long before it acknowledged the problems or tried to fix them.

This month, EA announced that it will be retiring three of the games that are currently available through Facebook. Those games are: The Sims Social, SimCity Social, and Pet Society. They will be gone, forever, as of June 14, 2013. EA has been suggesting that players try out some of the Facebook games made by PopCap (which EA owns) instead.

Today, Kotaku reports that EA has done some layoffs, and is streamlining some of its divisions. Kotaku has published a memo from Larry Probst that was sent to workers while the layoffs were occurring. Here’s a piece of that memo that was released on the EA blog

In recent weeks, the executive team has been tasked with evaluating every area of our business to establish a clear set of priorities, and a more efficient organizational structure. This process has led to some difficult decisions about the number of people and locations needed to achieve our goals.

The workforce reductions which we communicated in the last two weeks represent the majority of our planned personnel actions. We are extremely grateful for the contributions made by each of these individuals – they will be missed by their colleagues and friends at EA.

Other portions of the memo note that Andrew Wilson will take on leadership at Origin (which EA owns). The Vancouver Sun reports that PopCap Vancouver and Quicklime Games studios are shutting down as part of the restructuring at EA. This resulted in some layoffs. Some PopCap Vancouver employees will be placed in jobs at other PopCap or EA studios.

Welcome to The Gadget Professor Show #103 hosted by Don Baine, produced by Mike Baine.

Fire your phone company and start saving money! Make free calls to the U.S. and Canada and ultra low-cost international calls from anywhere in the world, with no contracts and no monthly bills. The netTALK DUO is the original “no computer needed” VoIP telephone device. One year of service is included with the DUO purchase; each additional year is only $29.95 plus tax.

The netTALK DUO is a sleek and versatile VoIP telephone device that connects directly to your router or computer, creating a fax-friendly phone line with all of the same features as your phone company. Enjoy clear call quality and free calling features such as call waiting, conference calling, Enhanced 911, 411 directory assistance, visual voicemail, and a videophone application. Choose a phone number or keep your own. Flat-rate, low cost international call plans are available and the netTALK DUO is supported by live U.S-based, technical support, seven days a week.

Plus, our regular software & apps features and some interesting interesting news items this week.

Sit back and relax while you watch The Gadget Professor.

We welcome our new sponsor LiveStream.

For a limited time mention the code: “The Gadget Professor” and receive a free monitor or a blue microphone with every Livestream HD 500 + Free Shipping in the USA. SPECIAL! For every HD Series Livestream Production Unit you purchase before the end of April, 2013, Livestream is including a FREE 1 Year Subscription to their Premium Streaming Service! For more information go to: Studio HD500

Visit The Gadget Professor on Facebook www.facebook.com/gadgetprofessor - check it out and LIKE him!

The Gadget Professor is produced on the Tricaster. For more information on the TriCaster call 480-422-1645, be sure to mention The Gadget Professor and you will get an extra super deal! Make sure to visit www.gadgetprofessorpromo.com for special pricing on great gadgets!

Subscribe Today:  Video
Download the Show File

Sign up for the Newsletter be sure to choose Gadget Professor

Follow @gadgetprofessor on Twitter
Contact e-mail thegadgetprofessor@gmail.com
Sign up for the Newsletter be sure to choose Gadget Professor

The Gadget Professor wants to hear from you,
email him at:TheGadgetProfessor@gmail.com
Twitter: @gadgetprofessor
Look for The Gadget Professor every Thursday here at Geek News Central.
Audio version NOW AVAILABLE!!

PlayPlay

PopClip A Productivity Tool for the Mac

Posted by KL Tech Muse at 7:01 PM on April 25, 2013

PopClip If you use a Mac and want to increase your productivity one of the applications I recommend taking a look at is PopClip. PopClip is like cut and paste on steroid. PopClip is available in the Mac app store and on-line. Once you download and install the application it will appear in your menu bar as a black and white rectangle. Now when you highlight a piece of  text a small menu bar will pop up above the selected text. By default it shows copy or paste, correct spelling on misspelled words, and define selected words. PopClip will also detect links and email addresses and let you open or copy them, and can start a web search for anything you’ve selected.

In default mode PopClip isn’t that exciting its real power are the extensions that are available for it. Some of the extensions that are available are add a note various application including Evernote, Nvalt or Notepad.  Send tweet to not only thru Twitter but also thru other applications such as Tweetbot or Buffer. You can also use it to the send a piece of text to various getting thing done apps like Omnifocus, Things and the Reminder App. PopClip also has other capabilities you can use it to search for a product on Amazon, find a piece of music in Spotify, or search for a video on YouTube. These are just some of the things that you can do using PopClip, the whole list of extensions are available on the PopClip Extension Page. Normally you use the mouse to activate PopClip however there is an Apple Script  you can install to activate it using a keyboard shortcut. PopClip is available in the Mac App store for $4.99. If you want to try it out there is a free trial version available through the website.

Robot Underpants #98 – 04.24.13

Posted by Langley at 11:27 PM on April 24, 2013

Mat “Langley” Luschek, Eric Rice, and “Starman” Michael Gaines talk swearing newscasters, Star Trek, Robocop News, Movie news, Ghostbusters, Comets crashing to Earth, Doctor Who news and Langley tries his hand at a commercial. Listen to that disaster! AND MORE!

* Walmart for Superman Tickets

* People mad at Zach Braff

* Wild Things 2 to be Based on Amanda Knox (Maybe?)

* Vacation Sequel/Reboot Delayed

* Petition to Save Futurama (Again)

* River Song, Captain Jack and Langley all have the same birthday; Want spinoff.

Swype is Out of Beta

Posted by KL Tech Muse at 2:14 PM on April 24, 2013

Swype Swype came out of beta today. If you are unfamiliar with Swype it is an alternative keyboard for Android. One of the reasons I love Android is the ability to find the keyboard that you like. The Swype keyboard has several modes, which they named, the Typer, the Tapper, the Swyp’er and the Dictator. Typer are those people who use both hands to type and don’t look at the results, (your typing teacher is beaming), Tappers look at the results as they type, Swype’er swipe from one letter to the next, and Dictators like to dictate their messages. Swype primary method is swiping. If you are like me and grew up learning to type on a typewriter, swiping can take some time to get use to. The key is not to think too much and just let your fingers swipe. I find if I start thinking about what I am swiping I tend to make more mistakes. Just start swiping and the app will predicts what you are trying to type. Yes, sometimes it will predict incorrectly, but over time it will get better the more you use it. You can easily go from swiping to typing or dictating depending on your mode.

Swype was brought by Nuance in October 2011. Nuance is the maker of Dragon Dictate the application that allows you to dictate your messages. If you get tired of swiping then Swype voice dictation option is available to you. Because is based on Nuance it does recognize your voice fairly well. Swype learns your tendencies the more you use it. It will pick up words that you use all time like your name or the city you live in, etc. If you connect your social networks Facebook, Twitter and Google Swype will personalize your usages. Swype also supports dialects and will load local words.

Swype is available in the Google Play Store at .99 cents for a limited time. There is also a 30 day free trial version available. I recommend trying the 30 day trial version first, I think if you give it a chance you will end up getting the full version before the 30 day trial version is over.

Should Amazon build a set-top box?

Posted by Alan at 10:25 AM on April 24, 2013

amazon prime logoToday, rumors are circulating around the web regarding Amazon. It is nothing new — the online retail giant has long been subject to such babble. Rumors of an Amazon phone still appear on a regular basis. Thanks to the success of the Kindle Fire, everyone seems to expect a handset to be the logical follow-up.

Today’s rumor is different though — there is no phone involved, but instead a set-top box. While I have no real interest in moving from a Nexus phone to a Kindle one, a living room device intrigues me.

I am a recent convert to Google TV and I love the platform. But I am also a Prime subscriber. I replaced Netflix with the Amazon service sometime back because it is not only a bit cheaper, but offers more upside with, not only the streaming video, but also free two-day shipping and a Kindle lending library.

Prime for Google TV has been greatly improved recently, with the app now being native, as opposed to opening a browser window. Thus I imagine an Amazon set-top box to bring Prime to the forefront and make it the focus of the device. And that does not feel like a bad thing.

If the device were Kindle Fire-like, in that it ran a version of Android customized for the big screen, then this could compete with the likes of Roku and Google TV in today’s growing environment of cord-cutters. Xbox may remain the front runner, but the power and financial backing of Amazon could present a real competitor in the market, and that would be good for all consumers.

Finally Mobile Streaming Becomes Truly Practical

Posted by tomwiles at 8:05 PM on April 23, 2013

I remember driving around back in the early 1980’s dreaming of what it might be like if I could listen to what I wanted when I wanted to. Back in those days, in many areas of the country, there was nothing to listen to but farm reports and hog prices. AM and FM stations would quickly fade in and out. Driving cross-country it was necessary to constantly change stations as they faded in and out, often vainly searching for something worthwhile to listen to.

When podcasting came along in 2004, in many ways it was the answer to that dream. Suddenly there was new content to listen to, on demand, on a wide variety of topics. It had to be downloaded and put onto a player in advance.

The past few years I’ve been experimenting with mobile streaming. For a long time, it just wasn’t practical in rural areas. Pandora would generally work better than all the other streaming services, but attempting to stream regular radio stations or even podcasts was generally not going to work.

However, now things have changed once again. With the widespread deployment of LTE mobile networks, successful casual streaming all kinds of different audio is not only possible, but practical in most of the areas I’m driving in. This opens up yet another new world of possibility.

Podcasting itself is a good case in point for something that came together because enough bandwidth was available. MP3 files had been around for a long time. Computers had already had the capability of recording digital audio for quite a number of years. RSS had been around for a while. All of these things converged and became something new.

Today I’m spending a lot of time with the Stitcher app on my Google Nexus 7 here in my truck, suction-cupped to the truck’s windshield and connected to stereo speakers via Bluetooth. Stitcher makes a great streaming mobile radio service. Now that the mobile data network is good enough in most areas to make streaming practical in the real world, new possibilities have opened up.

All of these things have been around a while. Stitcher is not new. The streaming concept has been around for quite a number of years. Podcasting as well has been around for probably at least nine years. What is different is now I don’t have to fuss with downloading them ahead of time. I really like the way stitcher lets you search for a keyword or two and then sequentially plays the different podcasts that showed up in the search. I find myself on a voyage of discovery, bumping in to podcasts I’ve never heard of. Because everything is on demand, like watching Netflix or Amazon streaming video, if I find an audio podcast I don’t like I simply skip ahead to the next one.

I can’t predict exactly how this will eventually develop. However, I can say, now that the mobile data bandwidth is a reality, there’s something here, and it’s pretty interesting. It beats the heck out of listening to farm reports or hog prices. It also beats having to fumble around with an iPod and auxiliary audio cables.

Java updated last week, still vulnerable today

Posted by Alan at 11:30 AM on April 23, 2013

java downloads

Oracle’s Java platform seems to be in an endless battle with Adobe Flash to see which can take the crown as the most compromised platform on your computer. Last week Oracle rolled out 42 patches for known security holes — and this was just another day for the oft-attacked software.

Now Security Explorations of Poland has announced it has found a new Reflection API vulnerability that affects all Java versions, including 7u21, which was just released last Tuesday. “It can be used to achieve a complete Java security sandbox bypass on a target system,” Gowdiak wrote on the Full Disclosure mailing list on Monday.

Attackers can exploit this latest vulnerability to achieve a complete Java security sandbox escape, Gowdiak says, adding that he also sent proof-of-concept code to Oracle demonstrating an exploit.

There is no telling when Oracle will patch this latest flaw, but the company generally follows a Microsoft-like approach, rolling out updates in one big release.

Really, the best solution is to simply uninstall Java if you have no need for the service.  Also, do not confuse Java with Javascript, which is mostly safe. Java can also be disabled within your browser —  a move I recommend you making.

GNC-2013-04-22 #853 Miranda – Privacy – Fair Use – CISPA

Posted by geeknews at 1:05 AM on April 23, 2013

As we have a truly bad man now in federal custody, what do you think about the process so far, I talk about Miranda, Privacy, Fair Use, Copyright. I also talk about The New Media Show this past week and the guest an commentary along with all the latest tech news and information.

Support our Show Sponsor:
32% off your new order @ GoDaddy: go32off1
$1.00 / mo WordPress Hosting with a free domain! Promo Code: press4
$1.00 / mo Economy Hosting with a free domain! Promo Code: geeks12
GoDaddy Promo Codes always save you money, check out my Promo Codes Today

Subscribe Today: Audio | Video (HD) | Mobile Video | iTunes | Zune

Download the Audio Show File

Follow me on Google+
Follow @geeknews on Twitter
Geek News Central Facebook Page
Show Hotline 24/7 1-619-342-7365 or e-mail geeknews@gmail.com

Links to articles covered in this Podcast on the GNC Show Notes Page [Click Me]

PlayPlay