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Monday, 08 October 2012 15:28

New iPod Touch Coming Soon!

Just a few weeks after the release of Apple's iPhone 5, word is spreading that the fifth generation of the iPod Touch is already on its way. The new iPod Touch release date is slated for late October, according to Slash Gear. When the iPod Touch announcement was made during Apple's iPhone 5 launch, the only information given about the iPod was that it would be released in October. Slash Gear reported that Australian users are now seeing a ship date of three weeks on Apple's website. The new iPod Nano reportedly has the same release date as the iPod Touch. Pre-order is currently available through the U.S. online store, but the ship date is simply stated as "October." The new iPods are in scant supply, CNET reported Friday, via a report from Japanese Apple blog Macotakara. Shipments of the new iPod Touch are due in Japan next Tuesday, and there are "considerably few numbers of the initial shipment." On Friday, MacRumors reported that early pre-orders of the Touch had moved to "Preparing for Shipment." One customer even reported that his credit card had been charged. In Australia the expected delivery date is Oct. 29, while in New Zealand the…
Friday, 05 October 2012 14:49

Google Takes YOU Out YouTube?

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - After struggling for years, in late 2010, Driving Sports TV, a scrappy, two-person video production outfit led by Ryan Douthit, finally began supporting itself with advertising income from YouTube. It didn't matter that the channel's production set was simply a green screen in Douthit's cramped garage in a leafy Seattle suburb; Driving Sports TV's revenues were roaring like the rally car engines it featured. Achieving self-sufficiency on YouTube was Douthit's dream. Then it became a nightmare. Over the past year, Driving Sports TV's popularity and revenues have plummeted as much as 90 percent, Douthit said, as viewers abandoned him for slicker, more professional and better-marketed fare that's suddenly streaming onto YouTube. Douthit is among thousands of amateur video producers who helped Google-owned YouTube become the Internet's most popular video-sharing site. But YouTube's thriving amateur core now feels squeezed out by the site's sweeping transformation from user-generated clips to more professionally produced content, posing a potential dilemma for Google's long-term ambitions in online video. "I drank their Kool-Aid," Douthit said. "I believed their whole pitch, that anybody with talent and drive could make a living out of YouTube." A year ago this month, YouTube embarked on an…
Thursday, 04 October 2012 13:42

iPhone 2G Most Toxic?

DETROIT (CBS Detroit) The Ann Arbor-based Ecology Center released data Wednesday from a cell phone toxicity study that ranked the Motorola Citrus as the least toxic phone on the market — and the iPhone 2G as the most toxic. The study came from a collaboration between the Ecology Center and ifixit.com. The full report is at www.HealthyStuff.org and www.ifixit.com. The Motorola Citrus' least toxic ranking was followed by the iPhone 4S and the LG Remarq. The new iPhone 5 ranked 5th, better than its primary competitor, Samsung's Galaxy S III, which ranked 9th. But every one of the 36 phones sampled contained at least one of following hazardous chemicals: lead, bromine, chlorine, mercury and cadmium, the study found. "These hazardous substances can pollute throughout a product's life cycle, including when the minerals are extracted; when they are processed; during phone manufacturing; and at the end of the phone's useful life," the Ecology Center said in a press release. Additionally, the mining of some tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold used in mobile phones has been linked to conflict in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the study author found. "Even the best phones from our study are still loaded with chemical…
Wednesday, 03 October 2012 15:11

Samsung Wants Apple Win Overturned

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Samsung Electronics Co Ltd said a major patent verdict in favor of Apple Inc should be overturned because the jury foreman did not disclose that he once was in litigation with Seagate Technology PLC, a company that counts Samsung as a major investor. Samsung's position, disclosed on Tuesday in an unredacted court filing, confirms a report from Reuters last week on the substance of the Korean company's argument. An Apple representative declined to comment. The global legal war between Apple and Samsung reached a crucial point in August when a jury in northern California found Samsung had improperly violated patented technology in the iPhone and iPad. They awarded Apple $1.05 billion in damages, and U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh could impose permanent sales bans on Samsung products. Samsung filed a motion for a new trial last month, but its allegations of juror misconduct were hidden from public view. Koh rejected Samsung's request to keep that argument under seal, and Samsung on Tuesday filed an unredacted version. During jury selection, Velvin Hogan - who eventually became the foreman - disclosed one lawsuit in which he had been involved, but failed to discuss two others, according to Samsung.…
Tuesday, 02 October 2012 13:33

Is Facebook Targeting You?

In the last few months, Facebook has made significant changes to the way advertising works on its site. As some predicted, Facebook's going public and needing to drum up more revenue has resulted in the company dipping its hands deeper into users' data to monetize it. More than that, those hands are starting to pull in data from outside of the Facebook kingdom. Privacy engineer Joey Tyson lays out the three big "innovations" in Facebook advertising from the last few months in a Facebook blog post, and argues that the company "carefully designed our versions of the features with your privacy in mind." Here's what's changed: 1. Advertisers aren't just targeting 'your type' anymore. They're actually targeting you. It used to be that advertisers tried to reach a particular audience, i.e., "25-year-old men that like sports cars and Little Ponies." But now advertisers are finding ways to target specific people, i.e. the guy they know has the email address " This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ." Thanks to "Custom Audiences," if a marketer knows your email address or phone number, they can tell Facebook to specifically target you with an ad. Tyson writes: "For example, a shoe store might want to show a special offer to…
DETROIT — Michigan's tech professionals can soon add a new skill to their resume: iPhone and iPad app development. This October, Develop Detroit will launch its second semester of courses, expanding upon its successful summer session. Entrepreneurs, programmers, or designers can enroll in one of two course tracks: iOS App Programming or Design. Classes will be offered in Detroit, Ann Arbor, and Lansing from Oct. 15 to Dec. 19. Expert iOS developers from local tech companies, including ArborMoon Software of Ann Arbor, Vectorform of Royal Oak, and Detroit Labs, will instruct students. Each Develop Detroit class will blend philosophical and practical concepts, ensuring that each student leaves class with the appropriate context and the practical skill to build their dream apps. Moreover, Develop Detroit connects every student with an experienced iOS mentor, thus building a more tightly-integrated tech community. The Detroit area has seen incredible growth in technology businesses over the last several years, driven by Quicken Loans, Detroit Venture Partners and its portfolio companies, Bizdom, Detroit Labs, TechTown, and numerous grass-roots community efforts. Consequently, demand for tech talent already exceeds supply, especially in iOS development and design. Develop Detroit believes it can help equip hundreds of developers and designers…
Friday, 28 September 2012 09:00

Kindle vs.Nook vs.Nexus

With the debut of Barnes & Noble's Nook HD, the competition to make the best 7-inch tablet appears to be a three-company race: Barnes & Noble with the Nook; Google (with an assist from Asus) and its Nexus 7; and Amazon, with both its recently-debuted Kindle Fire HD and its super-cheap original Kindle Fire, which still ranks on price. While all tablets are likely to have most of the mainstream content a reader might want, Amazon and the Kindle Fire seem to offer the best selection in terms of content across books, videos and magazines. The new Nook offers the best display and is the lightest and thinnest of the tablets -- though all four are fairly light and offer attractive screens. Nexus 7 has the most robust operating system for those who want to use their tablet for something other than consuming media. All four tablets have email access and allow users to browse the web. All four tablets also suffer from a lack of 3G or 4G capability and a relatively poor app selection (app store numbers offered by the companies are inflated, as a majority of the apps counted are apps optimized for the smartphone rendered onto…
Thursday, 27 September 2012 15:43

Happy Birthday Google!

If you've checked the Google homepage today, then you know what to say: Happy 14th birthday, Google! The giant search engine was founded by Stanford classmates Larry Page and Sergey Brin in September of 1998. The two named their project "Google," which is a play on the word "googol," or the "mathematical term for a 1 followed by 100 zeros," per the company's About page. Mashable credits September 4 as the day Page and Brin officially filed for incorporation, while The Washington Post notes that Google used to celebrate its birthday on September 7 (the day the company was actually incorporated). Either way, in recent years the festivities have officially moved to September 27. This isn't the first time Google has celebrated its inception with a doodle. While today's is modeled after a chocolate cake with rainbow-colored candles, other images have included cupcakes, a piñata and even an awesome, retro claymation birthday scene in 2011. So how is the corporation celebrating? Earlier this week, Google posted on the company blog its plans for the big 14: "To celebrate both our birthday and the spirit of entrepreneurship that's helped get us where we are today, we are hosting our first annual…
ANN ARBOR — Texting while driving is a serious threat to public safety, but a new University of Michigan study suggests that we might not be aware of our actions. UM researchers found that texting while driving is predicted by a person's level of "habit" — more so than how much someone texts. When people check their cell phones without thinking about it, the habit represents a type of automatic behavior, or automaticity, the researchers say. Automaticity, which was the key variable in the study, is triggered by situational cues and lacks control, awareness, intention and attention. "In other words, some individuals automatically feel compelled to check for, read and respond to new messages, and may not even realize they have done so while driving until after the fact," says Joseph Bayer, a doctoral student in the Department of Communication Studies and the study's lead author. This first-of-its-kind study, which identifies the role of unconscious thought processes in texting and driving, is different from other research that has focused on the effects of this behavior. Thus, the current study investigates the role of habit in texting while driving, with a focus on how (rather than how much) the behavior is…
Tuesday, 25 September 2012 14:24

Teaching Inventors To Be Entrepreneurs & More

ANN ARBOR — An inkless wet paint that changes color. A reusable heat pack you boil to recharge. A wireless sensor that could one day fit inside a blood vessel.   These are three of the technologies that could move closer to market thanks to a unique new Master of Entrepreneurship program at the University of Michigan. As for where the innovations fit in the marketplace and what their most promising applications are — that’s up to the students in the first cohort to discover over the coming year.   The program’s rare and immersive curriculum is targeted toward inventors — both current and aspiring ones. It’s a joint endeavor between the top-ranked UM schools of Michigan Engineering and the Ross School of Business.   “This new inventor-targeted program is, fundamentally, a new degree between these two disciplines, and provides the entire range of business and technical skills necessary to commercialize new technologies. It contains more business content than a typical master of engineering and more start up content than a typical MBA,” said Bill Lovejoy, program co-director and the Raymond T.J. Perring Family Professor of Business Administration at Ross.   Organizers say it fills a void in the entrepreneurship…
Tuesday, 25 September 2012 14:14

Google stock hits all-time high

Google's stock hit an all-time high of $750.04 in late trading Monday, before pulling back to a record closing price of $749.38. The new marks topped the previous records set in November 2007.   Shares of Google (GOOG) have rallied 16% this year, as the company continues to dominate in search and makes strides with its Android mobile platform. Just last month, research firm IDC reported that Google's Android had gained a whopping 68% share of the global smartphone market during the second quarter. That's four times the 17% market share held by Apple (AAPL).   Despite the run-up, Google continues to trade at a fairly reasonable value. Shares are trading 18 times 2012 earnings forecasts, and 15 times 2013 earnings estimates. And the stock is lagging the performance of the tech-heavy Nasdaq, which is up more than 20% in 2012.   Wall Street thinks the stock still has more room to run. Citigroup analyst Mark Mahaney reiterated his Buy rating late Sunday, and raised his price target on Google's stock to $850 a share from $740.   "We'd argue that Google is extremely well situated against most of the major trends in Consumer Internet today -- mobile, video, local,…
A fully developed search function on Facebook would be more driven by location and social connections. Currently, Facebook sees about 1 billion search queries daily without putting much effort into it. "I think Facebook has a big opportunity if they take on Google in search," said Brian Carter, Internet marketing expert. Facebook is making changes to its search function by adding a user's search history within the social network to the Activity Log, the company said. The tweaks, while still relatively minor at this point, could be part of more large-scale efforts to strengthen Facebook's search presence and compete with Internet rival Google. Earlier this month at TechCrunch's Disrupt conference, in his first public interview following the company's botched IPO, CEO Mark Zuckerberg discussed some of the long-term goals for the social network. He noted the company had an opportunity to use its more personalized information to answer specific questions for Facebook users and its advertisers. Now, in addition to Facebook user activity such as 'liking' or commenting on a post, the activity log contains a user's search history from within the social network. That information is only available to the user and to Facebook, and it is not retroactive.…
Monday, 24 September 2012 13:56

iPhone 5 Million Sold

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- Apple sold more than 5 million iPhone 5 phones since the highly anticipated device went on sale on Friday, setting a new sales record for the device, Apple announced Monday.   Over the weekend, the company outpaced the 4 million iPhone 4S units that it sold during last year's opening weekend, though the numbers are a bit skewed. This year's iPhone was simultaneously launched in the United States, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore and the United Kingdom, while last year's launch did not include Hong  Kong and Singapore.   Investors viewed the iPhone 5's opening weekend as somewhat of a disappointment. Wall Street analysts had anticipated a slightly more robust opening weekend, with most projections in the 6 million range.   Shares of Apple (AAPL, Fortune 500) fell 1% in early trading.   Apple CEO Tim Cook said he was pleased with the results, noting that demand outpaced the supply of iPhone 5s. Some people who ordered them over the weekend will have to wait until    October to get their new iPhones.   "Demand for iPhone 5 has been incredible and we are working hard to get an iPhone 5 into the…
Friday, 21 September 2012 18:54

iPhone 5 Flies Off Metro Detroit Store Shelves

ROYAL OAK (WWJ) - Demand for the iPhone 5 has been so strong, Apple has delayed some shipments. WWJ Newsradio 950′s Mike Campbell reported Friday there was enough supply to ensure retail outlets had enough to attract lines and media coverage.   People lined up outside retails stores nationwide, including right here in metro Detroit, for the iPhone 5. AT&T Vice President and General Manager Brian Ducharme seemed surprised people showed up at the company’s Royal Oak store hours before it was scheduled to open.     Kevin White of Royal Oak, got in line at 11 p.m. Thursday to be first to buy a iPhone 5 when the AT&T store opened at 8 a.m. Friday. (WWJ Photo/Mike Campbell) “That’s crazy,” Ducharme said. “I was talking to a few of them and I said, why didn’t you just order this online? And he said, there’s something about being the first one here. There’s people here worried about being seen and missing out on work. It’s just a frenzy and it’s an exciting fun day.”   There are a lot of reasons people give for wanting the new iPhone.   One customer said that it’s supposed to be life-changing. Another customer…