Thursday, January 22, 2015
"Neutrality must be mandated at the application and content layer if we truly want a free, open and non-discriminatory Internet," Chen said in a lengthy post on the Inside BlackBerry blog. "All wireless broadband customers must have the ability to access any lawful applications and content they choose, and applications/content providers must be prohibited from discriminating based on the customer�EU�s mobile operating system."
Chen's post brought critics out of the woodwork.
"As a BlackBerry app developer, I think this is a terrible idea," said Brian Knapp, leaving a comment on the blog. "You get developers to build for you by having a compelling platform, not by trying to force them to build for your platform."
"Enforced content/app neutrality is a terrible idea," said commenter Alastair Houghton. "There are all kinds of reasons why developers might choose not to support BlackBerry phones, and mandating that they do (whether themselves or via a third-party) is an onerous restriction that will dissuade people from developing software or services in the first place."
Rob Enderle, principal analyst at the Enderle Group, said developers go where the volume is -- but this tends to support dominant companies and put smaller ones at a huge disadvantage.
"Let's put Blackberry aside and look at Apple, but not iOS but MacOS. It is still a really small player in the PC world, largely because the volume of Macs keeps lots of business developers from putting the same effort into Mac apps as they would Windows," Enderle told us. "Linux just doesn't get great apps, for instance. Granted it isn't exactly user-friendly...
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A History of Space: The Pearly Gates from Dante of Cyberspace to the Internet at Staples in Bay City
There's an awful lot of content out there on YouTube and sorting the wheat from the chaff can be a serious undertaking. One way of making your video browsing smarter is to install the unofficial Ratings Preview extension for Google Chrome; it rather handily shows the rating for a clip right alongside every thumbnail, making it easier to pick out videos from search results.
With the extension installed and your YouTube pages refreshed, a small blue bar appears underneath thumbnail, indicating how liked or disliked the video is by other YouTubers. And they can be trusted, right? You can change the style of the bar and tinker around with various other options by clicking on the extension icon in the Chrome omnibox.
Another interesting feature is the option to have the best videos on any given page highlighted with blue borders (you can highlight between 1 and 8 top videos). If you're not looking for anything in particular and need some recommendations for what to watch, whether it's from the site front page or a particular channel, then enable the option in the plug-in's settings.
The extension can also display a rating out of 10 for each video calculated using a special algorithm. This can often be more telling than the rating given by YouTubers, especially when there are a group of clips with a similar score. To see the rating out of 10, tick the box marked Show RP score for every video. Again, you'll need to refresh the page to apply the changes.
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TEGG Service Provider, American Electric, Selects Viewpoint Construction Software to Manage Growing Service Operations
Viewpoint Construction Software®, a leading provider of innovative software solutions to the construction industry, is pleased to announce that Hawaii-based American Electric Company, LLC, has selected Viewpoint as a technology partner, purchasing Vista™ by Viewpoint. As a leader in electrical preventative maintenance and Hawaii's only TEGG service provider, American Electric is one of the largest contractors in Hawaii and is a signatory to IBEW Local 1186, Electrical Worker's Union in Hon...
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This year may well see a rare occurrence for world commodity markets – a decline in all nine key commodity price indices, says the World Bank's latest Commodity Markets Outlook , released today. While oil prices have seen the most dramatic decline, the third largest since World War II, other commodities have also been gradually weakening in recent months. And this broad-based weakness is expected to continue throughout 2015, before beginning a modest turn around in 2016. In oil markets, a...
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Snapchat hiring journalists to become its own publisher originally published by Gigaom, © copyright 2015.
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Take a photo with texture as the subject. In fact, try to fill the whole frame with one texture. Rather than show us a textured object, make the texture the object. Make sense?
To really get into a texture, you'll need sharp focus. And to maximize focus, if you're using an dSLR, you'll want to close down your aperture (or choose a higher f number, like F8). At the same time, you'll slow down your shutter speed to compensate, allowing in more light. As a result, you'll have more of the image in focus, and you'll get enough light through your lens to make the image possible.
Here's a great tutorial on that stuff.
Our lead image, by James St. John, is of wind-rippled sand on a beach. Stylistically, I can't decide if I like the imperfections of the dead grass stalks, or if I'd prefer a cleaner shot. I'm leaning toward the former, as he's celebrated a texture while giving it just a hint of context.
1. Submissions need to be your own.
2. Photos must be taken this week.
3. Explain, briefly, the equipment, settings, technique and story behind shot.
4. Email submissions to email@example.com, not me.
5. Include 970px wide image (200KB or less) AND a natively sized image in email. I know that your photo may not fall into those exact high rez dimensions, so whatever native resolution you're using is fine.
6. One submission per person.
7. Use the proper SUBJECT line in your email (more info on that below)
8. You agree to the Standard Contest Rules - though we DO accept non-US resident submissions.
9. If the image contains any material or elements that are not owned by you and/or which are subject to the rights of third parties, and/or if any persons appear in the image, you are responsible for obtaining, prior to submission of the photograph, any and all releases and consents necessary to permit the exhibition and use of the image in the manner set forth in these rules without additional compensation. If any person appearing in any image is under the age of majority in their state/province/territory of residence the signature of a parent or legal guardian is required on each release.
Send your best photo by Monday , January 26th at 10 AM Eastern to firstname.lastname@example.org with "Snow" in the subject line. Save your files as JPGs, and use a FirstnameLastnameTexture.jpg (970px wide) and FirstnameLastnameTextureWallpaper.jpg (2560px wide) naming conventions.
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Since then, Backblaze has also considerably increased the number of hard drives it runs in its data center. At the end of 2013, it operated 27,134 drives, while it had performance data for 41,213 disk drives by the end of 2014.
Demand for data storage has exploded with the rapid proliferation of smartphones, mobile computing devices and digital devices of all kinds. That is leading to a doubling of digital data every two years, with the world's total data volume expected to reach 44 trillion gigabytes by 2020, according to EMC's 2014 Digital Universe study, conducted with analyst firm IDC.
"All hard drives will eventually fail, but based on our environment if you are looking for good drive at a good value, it's hard to beat the current crop of 4 TB drives from HGST and Seagate," Backblaze engineer Brian Beach wrote in a Wednesday blog post.
To get a statistically significant idea of the reliability of the different drives it uses, Backblaze tracked the failure rates of all models in which it had 45 or more units deployed last year. "I chose 45 because that's the number of drives in a Backblaze Storage Pod and it's usually enough drives to start getting a meaningful failure rate if they've been running for a while," Beach noted.
The 17 models included in the study ranged from the 4 TB Western Digital, with an average age of 0.8 years and a 0 percent failure rate, and the Seagate 6 TB SATA 3.5, with an average...
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If I learned anything from watching the Back to the Future movies, it is that prescience is dangerous. Someone who knows too much about their own future might try to reprogram it in their favor, and every small change has the potential to rewrite history.
In an early scene from Back to the Future Part II, Marty McFly and his girlfriend Jennifer Parker - played by Elisabeth Shue - travel from 1985 to 2015. The DeLorean is airborne and Doctor Emmett "Doc" Brown is wearing a funky visor. But forget flying cars and fashion - Jennifer wants to know what happens to her in the future: "I'm gonna be able to see my wedding dress! I wonder where we live. I bet it's a big a house with lots of kids!"
Worried about where her curiosity might lead her, Doc pulls out his sleep-inducing alpha rhythm generator - it looks like a pair of high-tech opera glasses - and knocks her out with a flash. Doc and Marty then hide Jennifer's unconscious body in an alley to protect her from the shock of crossing paths with her future self.
Doc Brown is a time travel expert and practiced meddler, so it is not surprising that he carries around a sleep-inducing alpha rhythm generator in case he needs one to cover his tracks. But does a sleep-inducing device exist in the real 2015? It does not - at least not in the way Back to the Future imagines.
That flash of light is the first clue that the technology is too good to be true. Researchers at Pennsylvania State University found that nighttime exposure to light - especially the kind emitted by electronic devices - makes it harder to fall asleep.
Aiming a little lower than instant-sleep-inducing technology, we find ourselves among a range of devices that won't make you fall asleep, but might make you sleep better.
The U.S. military is very interested in efficient sleeping. In 2003, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) put $20 million toward its "Continuous Assisted Performance program," research that looked for ways to keep soldiers awake for up to seven days "without suffering any deleterious mental or physical effects and without using any of the current generation of stimulants," according to DARPA's then-director Tony Tether.
In conjunction with DARPA, a company called Advanced Brain Monitoring is developing a sleep mask called the Somneo Sleep Trainer. It blocks light and noise, and heating elements around the eyes may help people reach a deeper stage of sleep faster.
Another technique to encourage better sleep is called transcranial magnetic stimulation, or TMS. TMS uses magnetic fields to create small electrical currents in parts of the brain, and researchers are trying to tune those currents to nudge a sleeping brain toward restorative, REM sleep.
Sarah Lisanby is Chair of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Duke University. "Sleep is a rhythm," she says. "And you can actually use the different forms of stimulation - such as magnetic stimulation, or direct electrical stimulation, or sensory stimulation - at different frequencies to modulate those brain rhythms. The idea is to try to entrain the rhythmic activity of the brain in a way that would be comparable to sleep."
Which brings us back to Doc's device. Alpha waves are a type of brain wave that occur during REM sleep. If an alpha rhythm generator did exist, maybe it would stimulate the brain rhythms associated with restorative sleep. But there is another flaw in its design.
Brain-stimulating technologies like TMS are better at suggesting behaviors than forcing them. So, short of a blow to the head or some other kind of trauma, there isn't a reliable, non-invasive way to knock someone out. To put someone to sleep, they have to want it.
This post originally appeared at Marketplace Tech
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