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Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Facebook email: The new kid in town

Mark Zuckerberg actually does not want to call the new Facebook messaging system an email in the traditional sense. Neither would he term it as a “Gmail killer" like what has been speculated in the media. Mr. Zuckerberg said it is more than Gmail.
The latest Facebook product has been in the works for 15 months by a team of 15 engineers headed by Andrew Bosworth who said that it is the "biggest engineering team ever put up by Facebook for a new product.
It was Zuckerberg's interview with high schoolers, whenever he got the chance to talk to them that drove the Facebook chief to create the seamless messaging system. However, it was not what the teenagers are using as a way to communicate with one another that gave Zuckerberg the impetus, but rather it was what they are not using, the email.
According to the youngsters they are not using email because it was too slow and not real time. "It adds a lot of friction and cognitive load to the process of sending email and communicating", adds Zuckerberg.
Facebook messaging or Facebook email integrates the various messaging platforms, IM, sms, email into a single conversation thread with the other person or groups you are communicating to.
This feature is called seamless messaging and one of the three features included in the Facebook product which the conventional email does not have. The other feature is the conversation history where users can keep track of their communications over multiple platforms in one single history.
Social Inbox is another feature of the new messaging system. Here, the users' messages are stored in three separate categories: the "messages", where your most important messages are kept; the "others", for those which are not so important, and the "junk", where messages that are not valuable are thrown in.
For the general users of Facebook who are eager to try the new system, they will have to wait a little further. The initial launch will have the members of the press to try and test the product first and then give their feedback. The address @facebook.com will be given entirely optional for Facebook users who may wish to sign up.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

No Such Thing As Safe OS

The operating system is the backbone of a computer. It directs, manages and controls all the various applications installed on the hardware. The OS also processes the input/output data between the user and the computer.
Today's popular operating systems, Microsoft's Windows, Mac OS X of Apple and Chrome of Google cannot be said to be completely safe. Each of them has its own vulnerabilities. Not one is foolproof. A user of any of these softwares could be secure for a period of time, but for how long depends on the complacency of the vendor company.
Why do you think Microsoft is releasing security updates for their Windows softwares almost every month? Because it needs to be protected from those malicious writers who is always on the lookout for any loopholes in the system which they could exploit.
Just a couple of days ago Microsoft announced that they will be doing patches this September to fix 13 vulnerabilities.
Now, you might contend that Linux, or Chrome, or Mac OS X is safer and that Windows are more prone to attack by hackers. I don't think so. The only reason why Microsoft software is the target of so many viruses and malwares is because it is so widely used.
Any operating system is impervious to risks. Apple's Mac computers which have a reputation of being largely untouched by threats also have its own flaws.
A recent news on Apple is about the patching of three gaping holes on Safari 5.0.2 and Safari 4.1.2. These browsers are available for Mac OS X versions 10.5 and 10.6 and on Mac OS X version 10.4. These vulnerabilities on the browsers potentially put web surfers at risks of drive-by download attacks.

Even the Department of Home Security (DHS) knows the high-risk involved when they were alerted by the failure to keep its own systems upto date with the latest software patches. The vulnerabilities on their system was discovered not have been fixed when auditors working for the DHS inspector general ran a sweep of US-CERT using vulnerability scanner Nessus.

Friday, July 30, 2010

A Mini Hydro Power Plant For Mobile Devices

The latest hydrogen-powered mobile charger in the market is the MiniPak from the company Horizon. It is the cheapest around and comes in handy when the sun is not shining. Solar-powered chargers can be functional only when the sun is up.
The MiniPak, first demonstrated at CES 2010, was designed for charging portable electronic devices on the go. This neat looking gadget uses fuel cell technology and comes together with two refillable cartridges called HydroStik. The whole set is priced at a dandy $100 for those busy bodies who are always on the move.
The MiniPak fuel charger has a USB port in which to connect your smartphone or other devices that need to be recharged. Each of the two HydroStik fuel cells is a 'solid-state' hydrogen storage unit in which one of them has the juice equivalent to about 1000 AA batteries. Also, each of the fuel cells can store power up to 15 W. Nowadays, a smartphone or an mp3 player only needs less than 5W electricity to be fully charged.
Horizon has another product which complements the MiniPak, the HydroFill. With the HydroFill you don't have to buy another fuel cell after your HydroStik is depleted. The small scale refilling station can recharge the HydroStik just by putting water and plugging it in your wall socket. It will create hydrogen as fuel. It cost $500.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Samsung Epic 4G, Where Now SCH-r900?

Last month I made a post that Samsung SCH-r900 would most likely be the next 4G handset after the HTC Evo. It was first announced by Samsung themselves in March at the CTIA Wireless 2010 in Las Vegas.

But last Monday, Sprint revealed that Samsung will be coming out with the Epic 4G smart phone which will run on their wimax network. The Epic should be the second 4G handset on Sprint after Evo unless Samsung changes their mind. It is also Samsung's first 4G handset, again.

So with this Monday's announcement, (after the March announcement) what will happen to the aforementioned SCH-r900? Will its d├ębut push through this summer or is it dead? Or is it really the Epic 4G disguised as SCH-r900?

I do think however that Epic 4G would be the official one because when Samsung reported about the SCH-r900 they didn't came up with neither an image nor any specs. What they only said is that it will run on LTE technology of the other carrier Metro PCs and will be available for the consumers on the second half of the year. On the Epic 4G they came up with accompanying images and a quite remarkable specs and features. Samsung should have made some clarification regarding the issue.


Anyway, what really matters is how the Epic 4G will live up to the hype. In my humble opinion, Samsung would have to do a little bit of extra effort to make a nudge on some of its strong rivals notably the iPhone 4 and the HTC Evo.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Samsung SCH-r900, The Next 4G Smartphone

After the release of the first 4G handset,the HTC EVO,from Sprint last June 4,the next 4G smartphone in the US would most probably be the Samsung SCH-r900 and will run on Metro PCs carrier network.


Even before the launch of HTC EVO 4G, Samsung had already announced in
March the availability of the first commercial LTE capableCDMA/4G handset, although it wont deployed yet to the consumers until the be second half of this year.


No details of its specs nor any images have been provided by Samsung during its announcement at CTIA Wireless 2010 in Las Vegas.The only thing we know as of now is that it will fork on the LTE technology rather than on the Wimax being run by Spint on its HTC EVO and that it will be released late in the summer


The Samsung SCH-r900 will be the first LTE-enabled multi mode, CDMA,4G handset in America. Its introduction is part of Samsung's collaboration with Metro PCs in the US. Metro PCs has also selected Samsung Mobile to provide the networking infrastructure needed to launch its LTE technology in Las Vegas.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Nothing New in iAd Technology

After the iPod,iPhone and the iPad now comes iAd.But this one is not a
hardware.Rather,it is a software dubbed by Steve Jobs as Apple's next
big thing.

The Apple CEO,in his announcement at the company headquarters in
Cupertino,California last April 7, introduced iAd as one of the many
features in iPhone OS4,a new version of the iPhone operating
system.The iPhone OS4 will be launched in June.

The ad platform would allow apps developers in Apple`s App Store to
include ads in their software.The developers will get 60% of the
revenue, while Apple who will sell the ads will get 40%.

Mobile ad spending continues to rise in the US and in other
countries.Research firm eMarketer reported US advertisers spent $416
million in mobile ads in 2009 and projected it to grow to at least
$1.5 billion in 2013.

Although the debut of iAd in mobile advertising is significant,there
is really nothing new in the technology.Several ad platform providers
had been in the service for quite sometime now.Most notable among them
is AdMob which was acquired by Google last year (The deal is currently
being reviewed by regulators.).

The only question of advertisers is how would the format of the new ad provider
from Apple differentiate itself from the other mobile advertising
platforms.How will it change the game as what the iPod did in getting
songs and music to the consumers?Is it really the next big thing Mr.
Jobs is talking about?

As for now we just have to contend with the additional details about
iAd published by Hill Holiday.The advertising agency had a meeting
with Apple explaining the iAd platform.

The agency revealed that all ads (in HTML5) will be built by the iAd
team at first.That the iAd will initially work on the iPhone and the
iPod Touch but later will also be available on the iPad.
As for the pricing scheme,Ilhya Verdashko of Hill Holiday said what
struck him is "it wa straight forward and elegant" and "it is (the pricing scheme)what
you would expect from a premier online property."

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Save Money On Opera Mini 5

People using smartphones to surf the web should find Opera Mini 5 a big savings on their data plan subscription charges.This is an upgraded version of Opera Mini 4.2.
The browser is especially designed and developed for smartphones and PDAs by Opera Software company.It was officially launched on March 16 after being in beta version.
Opera Mini 5 can be downloaded on the company,s website (www.opera.com) free of charge.
If you have a mobile device with no wifi connectivity feature or you are paying your network provider on a per kilobyte basis on the data you consume from surfing the net,it would be wise to download and install Opera Mini 5.
OM5 compresses the webpage you are trying to load by 90% by using only a tenth of the bandwidth of other browsers,thereby reducing your data usage substantially.
Another great feature of OM5 is the password manager.When you login on one of your accounts on the internet a prompt will ask if you would like OM5 to remember your password so that the next time you log in you don't have to enter it again.
Although it is touted to be faster than other browsers in loading web pages on mobile devices,Opera Mini 5 is just about the same time speed as the default browser on most smartphones.But clicking on the back button will get you very quick on the previous page.
One more big thing about Opera Mini 5 is that it renders a full web page much like on a desktop.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Withdraw Money Using Paypal Debit Card

Paypal users could make a request for a debit card Mastercard the company is offering to their clients who has a premium or business type account.
The card makes withdrawals of Paypal funds fast and easy.No need to initially transfer the funds from your Paypal account to your bank account which could take 3 to 4 days at the least before you can get the money.
The Paypal debit card can be used 24/7 on any ATM where Mastercard is accepted.However,it is available only to those who have premium or business accounts.Customers with personal and student accounts must upgrade to either premium or business to avail of the debit card.
The card works just like any other debit cards.You can make shopping purchases with it and pay restaurants anywhere where Mastercard is accepted and it will automatically be debited on your Paypal balance.
Another interesting feature of this product is the 1 percent cash back you will earn whenever you sign for a purchase.(Requires enrolment for the Paypal Preferred Rewards Program).
There is a spending limit of 3,000 USD and a daily 400USD ATM limit associated for the use of the card,although there may be a cash withdrawal fee when using the card at an ATM.(Paypal does charge a very small fee when funds are added to your account.)
A 100% protection against unauthorized charges on the card is guaranteed.This applies to fraud and theft upon notifying Paypal within 2 business days.