Thursday, March 6, 2008

AIM client with iPhone ichat

Apple iPhone ichat with aimFinally, after so many months, IMing is coming to the iPhone with AOL iChat native for iPhone.

No more forced texting! It'll support invisible mode, you'll be able to make your own buddy icons using your stored photos, and you'll swipe to switch between conversations.

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Doctor Who Game Announcement Coming Soon

Doctor who editor- EidosBritish sci-fi institution Doctor Who for the PC, PS2 and the DS is coming confirms developer Eidos. Soon, too! According to an Eidos spokesperson:

We haven't announced a release date at the moment. It's not too far away. We should be showing it to [press] quite soon... It's for PS2, PC and DS...
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iPhone 2.0 Update Available Free in June, Touch Users Get to Pay Up

iPhone 2.0 update free in JapanAll of the awesomeness you've been reading about—from an AIM client to Enterprise goodness—will be coming your way in June with the final 2.0 software update. For free! Unless you've gotta an iPod touch, then due to those nefarious "accounting practices" you have to pay to get the update. Again! ($20? less? more? You should've just gotten the phone, asshole.)

Apple Announces iPhone 2.0 Software Beta Includes SDK & Built-in Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync

CUPERTINO, Calif., March 6 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Apple(R) today previewed its iPhone(TM) 2.0 software, scheduled for release this June, and announced the immediate availability of a beta release of the software to selected developers and enterprise customers. The iPhone 2.0 beta release includes both the iPhone Software Development Kit (SDK) as well as new enterprise features such as support for Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync to provide secure, over-the-air push email, contacts and calendars as well as remote wipe, and the addition of Cisco IPsec VPN for encrypted access to private corporate networks.

"We're excited about creating a vibrant third party developer community with potentially thousands of native applications for iPhone and iPod touch," said Steve Jobs, Apple's CEO. "iPhone's enterprise features combined with its revolutionary Multi-Touch user interface and advanced software architecture provide the best user experience and the most advanced software platform ever for a mobile device."

The iPhone SDK provides developers with a rich set of Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) and tools to create innovative applications for iPhone and iPod(R) touch. Starting today, anyone can download the beta iPhone SDK for free and run the iPhone Simulator on their Mac(R). Apple today also introduced its new iPhone Developer Program, giving developers everything they need to create native applications, and the new App Store, a breakthrough way for developers to wirelessly deliver their applications to iPhone and iPod touch users.

With the iPhone SDK, third party developers will be able to build native applications for the iPhone with a rich set of APIs, including programming interfaces for Core OS, Core Services, Media and Cocoa Touch technologies. The iPhone SDK will allow developers to create amazing applications that leverage the iPhone's groundbreaking Multi-Touch(TM) user interface, animation technology, large storage, built-in three-axis accelerometer and geographical location technology to deliver truly innovative mobile applications.

Apple has licensed Exchange ActiveSync from Microsoft and is building it right into the iPhone, so that iPhone will connect out-of-the-box to Microsoft Exchange Servers 2003 and 2007 for secure over-the-air push email, contacts, calendars and global address lists. Built-in Exchange ActiveSync support also enables security features such as remote wipe, password policies and auto-discovery. The iPhone 2.0 software supports Cisco IPsec VPN to ensure the highest level of IP-based encryption available for transmission of sensitive corporate data, as well as the ability to authenticate using digital certificates or password-based, multi-factor authentication. The addition of WPA2 Enterprise with 802.1x authentication enables enterprise customers to deploy iPhone and iPod touch with the latest standards for protection of Wi-Fi networks.

The iPhone 2.0 software provides a configuration utility that allows IT administrators to easily and quickly set up many iPhones, including password policies, VPN setting, installing certificates, email server settings and more. Once the configuration is defined it can be easily and securely delivered via web link or email to the user. To install, all the user has to do is authenticate with a user ID or password, download the configuration and tap install. Once installed, the user will have access to all their corporate IT services.

The iPhone 2.0 software release will contain the App Store, a new application that lets users browse, search, purchase and wirelessly download third party applications directly onto their iPhone or iPod touch. The App Store enables developers to reach every iPhone and iPod touch user. Developers set the price for their applications -- including free -- and retain 70 percent of all sales revenues. Users can download free applications at no charge to either the user or developer, or purchase priced applications with just one click. Enterprise customers will be able to create a secure, private page on the App Store accessible only by their employees. Apple will cover all credit card, web hosting, infrastructure and DRM costs associated with offering applications on the App Store. Third party iPhone and iPod touch applications must be approved by Apple and will be available exclusively through the App Store.

The iPhone SDK provides a reliable, fast and secure way to create innovative applications for the iPhone and iPod touch. In addition to the rich set of iPhone OS APIs, the iPhone SDK also provides advanced tools for creating native iPhone and iPod touch applications including: Xcode(R) for source code editing, project management and graphical debugging; Interface Builder with drag and drop interface creation and live preview; Instruments to monitor and optimize iPhone application performance in real time; and the iPhone Simulator to run and debug applications.

During the beta iPhone SDK program, a limited number of developers will be accepted into Apple's new iPhone Developer Program and offered the ability to get code onto iPhones for testing. The Standard Program costs $99 (US) per year and gives members an iPhone SDK and development tools; access to pre-release iPhone software; technical support; the ability to get code onto iPhones for testing; and distribution of applications via the new App Store. The Enterprise Program costs $299 (US) per year.

In addition to these new iPhone network and security features, the beta iPhone 2.0 software provides several new Mail features such as the ability to view PowerPoint attachments, in addition to Word and Excel, as well as the ability to mass delete and move email messages.

Pricing & Availability

Apple plans to release the final iPhone 2.0 software, including the iPhone SDK and new enterprise features, as a free software update for all iPhone customers by the end of June. Third party applications created for the iPhone will also run on the iPod touch, and iPod touch users will be required to purchase a software update to run these applications. The free beta iPhone SDK is available immediately worldwide and can be downloaded at The iPhone Developer Program will initially be available in the US and will expand to other countries in the coming months. Apple is accepting applications beginning today from enterprise customers who would like to join the private iPhone Enterprise Beta Program (
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Silver Satin PS3 and Xbox 360 Arcade now loose in Japan

Silver satin PS3 Xbox 360 in JapanAnnounced in early February, both the Silver Satin PS3 and Xbox 360 Arcade are now on sale in Japan. The SS PS3 is a spec-for-spec equivalent of the existing black and white Japanese models.

However, this is the first time the entry-level Xbox 360, already available outside of Nippon, makes an appearance on Japanese soil.

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Toshiba to open up U.S. nuclear power business

Atsutoshi Nishida- Toshiba Corp. President CEOConsumer electronics giant Toshiba Corp said on Thursday it had launched a new company in the United States to enhance its nuclear power businesses.

Toshiba America Nuclear Energy Corp started operation this month and has the primary mission of marketing and promoting advanced boiling water nuclear power plants and providing support for related services.

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Blu-ray Movie Rereleases Coming with BD-Live

BD LiveBlu ray movies Today, Gizmodo got first confirmation of this from Fox, which told us it'll be re-releasing Alien Vs. Predator later this year with a suite of new interactive features.

Sony Pictures is also reaching in with both hands, though they're "not 100% sure [they're] going back on every disc" and will be looking at "different ways [they] can allow people to connect to a BD-Live site" for stuff that's already come out sans the BD Launcher. But they haven't figured that second part out yet.

To be fair, of all the Blu-ray studios, Fox is currently the most pumped about the interactive aspect—a big reason they helped build Blu along with Sony and friends. What Fox is adding doesn't make this a crap double dip, either: It's a multiplayer game woven into the film that you play as it progresses, attacking and killing other players in hopefully the most genuine film interaction to date. Not only do you upload your own avatar, it'll stay in memory and reappear when you buy future AVP titles. Sven Davison, Fox's VP of Worldwide Product Development and Production, said nothing he's seen on HD DVD has come close to this.

Davison also said Fox was looking at three other major franchises for a heavy interactive component. But other studios probably aren't going to be as scrupulous, because they primarily see interactivity as "icing on the cake" rather than potatoes to the 1080p-and-uncompressed-audio meat.

This of course opens the door for nearly everything already on BD to be double-dipped in the coming year—especially in cases like Warner's, since that studio has already launched more interactive versions of movies on HD DVD while simultaneously putting out lower-featured editions on BD. Would this have happened if the 2.0 spec had been mandatory from the start?

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Asus and Microsoft working an Eee-targeted version of Windows 7?

ASUS eee and windows XP working on windows 7Now the nine-inch Eee is officially available with Windows XP pre-installed, people are wondering the obvious -- why XP and not Vista, since XP is being discontinued in June and Vista can kinda-sorta be made to run on an Eee? The answer, direct from Microsoft, is both obvious and a little surprising: Given the Eee's "other requirements," Asus and Microsoft "couldn't go the Vista route," presumably because the Eee doesn't really have the horsepower for it. Sure, but what caught our interest was that Microsoft is "in close discussions with Asus [regarding] how to take that forward... in regards to the Windows 7 Europe timeframe."

Windows 7, you'll recall, has that lean new kernel, which would presumably make building a stripped-down version specifically for Eee-class machines easier -- but the last we heard, Windows 7 wasn't due until at least mid-2009 (and possibly not until 2011), so either Microsoft is planning to continue shipping XP after June or Windows 7 is coming much earlier than we thought. Our money is on XP continuing to soldier on, but here's hoping.

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Internet Explorer 8 Beta 1 Available for Download

IE 8.1 installation processMicrosoft has released the first public beta of Internet Explorer 8 for download by willing testers, which debuted this week at the Mix conference in Las Vegas. Intended for developers and designers only, IE8's most intriguing new feature so far is "Web Slices," which lets you monitor a single section of a web page, like an eBay auction (similar to Leopard's Web Clips.)

Web developers will be excited about better standards compliance. Check out some setup screens, including a Firefox settings import wizard that detects your 'fox extensions, after the jump.

The IE8 Beta 1 installation requires an entire system restart, which is a big pain in the buttocks. Once that's done, a setup wizard launches with some interesting settings:

IE 8.1 settingsIE 8.1 setupIE 8 setup activityIE 8.1 default browser settingSmart of the setup wizard to detect Firefox and its settings. I don't have Opera or Safari installed on this PC; I wonder if it goes as far as to detect those.

IE 8.1 firefox importThe mention of Firefox extensions is exciting! Wouldn't it be nice if Firefox extensions worked in IE8?
IE 8.1 firefox import processInterestingly, that "Go online to view similar IE add-ons" button only found one match for my ten extensions—a version of Greasemonkey for IE. I'm still in the midst of exploring IE8, and deciding whether Activities is a worthwhile, uh, activity.

The IE8 Beta 1 is a free download, but only go there if you're willing to deal with wonkiness—it is only the first beta. Also, the installation requires a system restart—ugh! Update: here's another good rundown of Web Slices and another new feature called "Activities".

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Wednesday, March 5, 2008

iPhone as a Multi-Touch Mouse with Touchpad Pro

iPhone/iPod touch only: Freeware application Touchpad Pro turns your iPhone or iPod touch into a multi-touch mouse for any operating system.

You'll need a jailbroken iPhone or iPod touch, then just install Touchpad Pro from To get it working with your computer, you'll need to install VNC (it's already running on your Mac) and follow the instructions on the site. Once it's running, you can use your iPhone's screen like a MacBook Air trackpad, which means you get the regular mouse actions in addition to two-finger scroll, double-finger-tap right-click, and a ton more (check out the video for the full demonstration). Touchpad Pro is freeware, iPhone/iPod touch only.

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Microsoft finally releases Singularity- The research oriented operating system

Microsoft singularity snapshotMicrosoft Singularity- It's been in development for nearly half a decade, but this year at Microsoft's R&D extravaganza TechFest, the company finally lifted the curtain on its research-oriented Singularity OS.

Let's just be clear from the get-go, though: while it's is available for immediate use, Singularity is nowhere near anything you'd replace your desktop OS with. The sole intention here is to test out futuristic new concepts in application interaction, microkernel architecture, and so on, so don't expect to hear that Microsoft is hanging up the Vista apron or anything. But for the turbo-geeks in the crowd, the Singularity Research Development Kit (RDK) 1.1 is now available for download for academic non-commercial use. And for the rest of us, well, we'll just see what the year 2011 holds in store.

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Super Smash Bros. Brawl Character Super Evolved

We've seen stuff like this before, that doesn't mean we're sick of Nintendo character evolution charts. Never! This time around we're tracking the progression that the brawlers from Super Smash Bros. Brawl have undergone. Hit the jump for a look at Samus, Kirby and non-Nintendo character but Wii-favorite Sonic.

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Air Force Buys 300 PlayStation 3 for Research

PS3- Airforce buys 300 PS3 SkynetThe Air Force has bought 300 PlayStation 3 for "research." Whether "research" means "let's play a massive Call of Duty 4 game" or "let's start building SkyNet with 300 PlayStation 3 nodes" or "let's create a giant black mecha with Blu-ray lasers" is yet to be seen. According to the Air Force, they need the Cell processors for "assessment:"
The Air Force Research Laboratory is conducting a technology assessment of certain cell processors. The processors in the Sony PlayStation 3 are the only brand on the market that utilizes the specific cell processor characteristics needed for this program at an acceptable cost.
So in case you have 300 PS3 that just fell from a truck, here is the order:
The contractor shall provide the following items on a firm fixed price basis:

Item 1: Sony PlayStation 3 Game Console - 40 GB Hard Drive

Qty: 300

Sony Part Number 98006

The estimated delivery date is 30 days after receipt of award. The place of delivery, acceptance, and FOB destination point is F4HBL1/Transportation Depot 2, 148 Electronic Parkway, Rome, NY 13441-4516.
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Tuesday, March 4, 2008

LEGO Batman Debut Trailer

Lego Batman game trailorIn LEGO Batman, there are four costumes "for each playable character -- the one IGN saw featured Robin in a magnetized outfit which allowed him to walk on metal walls and use metallic objects to his advantage in combat."

Just as with the last LEGO title, there are plenty of instances where automated building with the titular toy blocks is necessitated by the situation. Batman will need to construct a ladder for Robin to climb or build a machine that spits out one of those handy dandy suits we just mentioned.

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New Asus WM Smartphones at CeBIT

New Asus smartphone in CeBITThe CeBIT conference is happening right now in Hanover, Germany. Right now, the biggest news there seems to be some new devices and new interfaces coming from Asus. The basics is that it's 3G and it's expensive. It's also a WM6.1 Pro device with a custom interface slapped on top.

Asus is also showing off the M536, a WM6.1 pro device with a front-facing QWERTY, 320x320 flush touchscreen, WiFi, and HSDPA. We'd call it a Treo 750 killer, but it's Euro-bands only. ...Which makes it a Treo 750v killer.

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Microsoft and Harrah's confuse B-list celebs with Surface

Microsoft surface Harrah jasonWe were originally supposed to see a "limited rollout" of Surface in 2007 at various Harrah's casino properties, which obviously didn't happen -- but despite the delays, Microsoft is apparently now feeling confident enough in the tech to let B- and C-list celebrities grope at it during the 2008 National Heads-Up Poker Championship Drawing Party at Caesar's Palace.

Microsoft surface with cheadle celebsUnlike the standard demos we saw at CES which involved relentlessly upbeat hipster presenters doing things like making custom snowboard designs, the motley crew at Caesar's was apparently only allowed to crudely write their names on photographs of themselves. You can almost see the joy in Jason Alexander's face, can't you? Sadly, it looks like Don Cheadle wasn't able to erase whatever's printed on his jacket and poor Shannon Elizabeth didn't seem to be able make anything happen at all. Maybe Microsoft should have fired up that Hungry Hungry Hippos clone and let these fools battle out instead.

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Green Cellphone battery- An industry solution..

Green cellphone battery Cellphones, and the materials they are made of, in general, contain hazardous chemicals that can be harmful to us all especially when they’re piled up in huge volumes. This might not be affecting us now, but in due time, all the filth will eventually accumulate to haunt future generations. Clearly, action needs to be taken as soon as possible to fix this serious problem.

So how do we do it? An entry to the Greener Gadgets Competition held recently in New York City offers a very viable suggestion: create a universal battery pack that will work with any consumer electronics product, be it a cellphone, MP3 player, laptop, or other battery-powered device.
“The Green Cell battery is a single, standardized battery which will fit every type of personal electronic device. [It] is made without toxic chemicals and is safe and environmentally friendly. It can also be recharged or replaced at a local vending machine.”
This is a very nice concept that, if ever developed into a full product, could save us all from the hassle of having to carry lots of different chargers around for all our mobile devices. It will also make looking for replacement batteries easier than ever, and you don’t have to worry about causing harm upon disposing of used units because, as mentioned in the concept specs, this will be made without toxic chemicals and other harmful substances. It should in fact be safe and environmentally friendly.

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Sunday, March 2, 2008

iPod Nano Getting Purple Paint Job?

Purple iPodiPod nano dressed up in yet another sickening color—this time deep purple.

The advertisement was spotted in a circular today, but we have not seen it for ourselves. Has anyone glimpsed a shot of the picture in question? And do we really need purple to add to the list of nauseating colors the iPod nano already comes in? Sentences ending in questions aside, we have seen the iPod shuffle gain a similar purple treatment, so it does not seem imposible. We'll let you know as soon as we hear any official word on the potential update.

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Week in Games: Army of Two, Super Smash Bros Brawl & More...

In addition to the release of Army of Two and Super Smash Bros Brawl there are two baseball game releases to remind us that Spring is just around the corner - at least it is here in Atlanta. Despite the dusting of snow on my deck last week, blooms are appearing around the yard already. And as always there's a handful of quirky DS games to give me pause.

Bully: Scholarship Edition (Wii, X360)
Rockstar's Bully comes to the Wii and 360 with optimized graphics and all new missions.

Let's Ride! Friends Forever (DS)
"Every girl needs a best friend, and yours is your horse! Together, there's nothing you can't do."

Major League Baseball 2K8 (PS2, PS3, PSP, Wii, X360)
MLB '08: The Show (PS2, PS3, PSP)
Performance enhancing drugs not included.

Army of Two (PS3, X360)
The third-person shooter with a heavy reliance on partnership hits the streets.

Chicken Hunter (DS)
Shoot the chickens while they run amok.

Imagine: Figure Skater (DS)
Following in the footsteps of Imagine Fashion Designer, Imagine Animal Doctor, Imagine Babyz and Imagine Master Chef.

Super Smash Bros. Brawl (Wii)
You won't have to wait much longer - it's set to be released March 9th, 2008.

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iPhone's First Native P2P Torrent App is Up and Running

iPhoneCore, an iPhone Hacker with mad hacking skills, has managed to port to the iPhone a functioning P2P client based on Transmission, which is a popular torrent app for Macs. This is the first time P2P torrent software has run natively on the iPhone, and the prospect has us in tizzy fits of excitement.

Tests have been carried out, and they have worked a charm. However, before you guys go nuts about downloading completely legal torrent files, there are some things you should know:
  • This is a command line client at present, and although someone will chuck a GUI on it in the near future, steer clear unless you can handle messing with terminal.
  • EDGE and P2P will screw your shit up. If you plan to get your download on, it's WiFi all the way.
  • If you start a download immediately before having sex, your iPhone's battery will be dead before you are finished; i.e. torrenting will drain your battery extremely rapidly.
  • You won't see this up in, hit through on the link for further instructions.
All that aside, this is a neat development and bodes well for the post-SDK era. If anyone does give this one a go, let us know how you get on.

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Intel's Silverthorn becomes the Atom, Menlow the Centrino Atom

Intel centrino atom insideAnother brain-shattering announcement that you've all been waiting for is here. Intel has officially dubbed the Silverthorn and Diamondville chips "Atom," and the Menlow platform has become the "Centrino Atom."

We know, it's hard to believe the day has come, but it's finally happened. Obviously, the 45nm Atom chips, and Centrino Atom technology will be targeted for MIDs, UMPCs, and all manner of small, internet-centric devices. Undoubtedly an unending vista of total awesomeness awaits us now that they've got some fancy new names.

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Four Episodes of Friends Cost One Man $22,000

Four episode of friendsOne woman was using her husband's Vodafone mobile phone to download four episodes of friends. The downloads were interrupted as the man left his home in the UK for business trip in Germany, but once his plane touched down, the downloads continued.

When the man arrived back home, Vodafone actually called his firm to alert him of the huge data charge coming in the mail—all £11,000 of it—based upon some sort of punishing out of network rate from the Germany portion of the downloads (despite the fact that Germans using Vodafone don't pay £11,000 phone bills every month).

Given that this isn't the first time mobile carriers have exploited their Europe-trotting customers, the European Union commissioner is giving wireless companies until July 1st to justify exorbitant cross-boundary charges.

We wish Vodafone the best of luck in their great time of difficulty.

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