Subscribe: Today's Latest and Hot Stuff: Web Development Tools, Internet News, Software and Technology Reviews
Preview: Today's Latest and Hot Stuff: Web Development Tools, Internet News, Software and Technology Reviews

Today's Latest and Hot Stuff: Web Development Tools, Internet News, Software and Technology Reviews

All in One: It’s blogs that features latest technologies used for web design and development, entertainment and marketing tools and strategies. It also features latest inventions, in demand high-end computers, gadgets, accessories, games and all other h

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IE8 to be the last IE-engine based Microsoft browser?

Mon, 16 Mar 2009 01:55:00 +0000

Could IE8 be the end of the line for the most popular (though declining) browser in the world? There have been rumors floating that indicate Microsoft may be making such a move, potentially switching development to a browser built off an entirely different engine. Whether based off the alpha “Gazelle” browser Microsoft has already introduced or the growing WebKit platform, there seem to be a lot of signs pointing towards IE8 being the last Internet Explorer to appear.

Some will certainly cheer such a change but others may dread it. There is a massive base of IE-only applications that exist around the world, from banking interfaces to media players to numerous pieces of software, all which bet on people most likely using (or willing to use) IE. For all of those, IE8 being the end means that inevitably they would need to move away from ActiveX and all other IE-backwards-compatible components. There's also the embedded application factor, where many programs use IE's engine to render content or perform other functions. It's a big change, and one that indicates Microsoft may be re-thinking their browser strategy altogether.

Of course, this is just speculation. There's a lot of good reasoning behind it, and Microsoft could potentially benefit greatly in doing so, but by the same token seek to lose a lot too. Part of their browser dominance originally focused around support for proprietary protocols and APIs, which gave them overwhelming advantages in many situations. If the software giant does ditch IE-based browsers, it'll represent a fundamental change in how many view the browser market. What's your take: should Microsoft dump IE in favor of something new?


Microsoft-Novell partnership yielding little results

Mon, 16 Mar 2009 01:49:00 +0000

When Microsoft and Novell partnered some time back, many people predicted doom and gloom. Open source advocates said that the IP sharing and cross-licensing Novell had agreed to was detrimental to Linux and ultimately was just a trap to any potential customers that would sign up. Businesses tasked with running mixed-operating system environments seemed to initially welcome the deal, though, and the two actually expanded their alliance with further investments back in August.

Specifically, the software giant agreed to purchase up to $100 million of additional Suse Linux Enterprise Server certificates – paid in $25 million increments starting last November as the certificates were distributed. But things are now slowing down in the Novell-Microsoft relationship, as it turns out, the companies didn’t sign a single large customer during the most recent quarter. Novell's approach to this loss of sales has been to blame itself, claiming that their reseller channel is insufficient rather than pointing fingers at Microsoft.

Novell also said that they have to date invoiced $199 million, or 83 percent, of the original $240 million agreement. So why did Microsoft prepay $25 million for a new batch of certificates when it still had $41 million lying around? It’s clear that Novell needed the cash, the company reported disappointing first-quarter earnings and a slide in its Linux business, but Microsoft’s motivation for the move seems unclear.


Download of the Week: Miro

Mon, 16 Mar 2009 01:48:00 +0000

The increasing adoption of broadband has made it easier than ever to enjoy digital media and online videos in particular – whether it is user generated or professionally produced content that you are looking for. With the growing sources for online video, though, sometimes you just need the right tool to stay on top of it all. Miro is a desktop player that doubles as your video library and can download online video from a number of sources just as well.

This free cross-platform application is a combination of a video and audio podcast player with a built-in BitTorrent client and media player (based on VLC under Windows). There is a comprehensive programming guide that can be set to download new videos via RSS or you can just subscribe to content on your preferred torrent site, all while keeping track of what you've watched already and what is queued up for you. It’s most recent version, Miro 2.0, brings integration with streaming sites, a windowed video player, and much-improved performance.

Unfortunately, support for streaming video still feels half baked as it merely loads up websites like in a browser inside the application to play the videos rather than using its own player. Regardless, it does offer the advantage of bringing together a bunch of video sources from around the web and putting them together in a single, clean interface.


Online gaming grows on consoles, Xbox 360 leads the way

Mon, 16 Mar 2009 01:47:00 +0000

Although PCs are still the most widely used platform then it comes to online gaming, consoles are quickly rising in popularity. This according to a recent survey among 20,000 U.S. gamers by market research firm NPD, which found that consoles now account for a quarter of all online playtime, a “statistically significant” increase from 19 percent a year ago.

The Xbox 360 was second overall and the leader for online gaming using consoles, with 50 percent of the market, despite being the only one not giving out this functionality for free. Meanwhile, online use amongst Nintendo Wii owners rose from 18 percent to 29 percent. Specific figures for other platforms were not provided, but the company said that the PS2 fell dramatically and PS3 moved up from fifth place to third place among consoles. Additionally, the report claims online gaming has also become more popular among younger users, increasing 5 percent in gamers aged 13 to 17, while decreasing slightly among older gamers.


Amazon uses DMCA to prevent third-party eBook sales

Mon, 16 Mar 2009 01:46:00 +0000

Apple isn't the only company with a proprietary device that they want total sale control over. Amazon's Kindle, for instance, is also designed to make use of online shopping exclusively through sanctioned Amazon avenues. Thus, when the retailer learned about a third party method used to extract the PID information from a Kindle, with the end goal being content delivery from a non-Amazon source, they acted quickly.

MobileRead published instructions on how to use a small piece of software to get your Kindle’s PID, and ended up receiving a DMCA cease and desist notice from Amazon, telling them to immediately pull the software and the instructions on how to use it. Though the site doesn't necessarily admit any wrongdoing, they complied with Amazon – but not before many mirror sites began replicating the content.

Their goal was simple: allow people to buy eBooks for the Kindle from anywhere. Given how much Amazon has invested into the device, you can't really blame them for waving the DMCA at anyone who would try to circumvent their direct channel to it. Many other companies, such as Apple, do exactly the same – despite protests from users who think the choice should lie with whoever owns the device. Amazon is resolute, though, claiming that information like the Kindle's PID is protected by the DMCA and users have no right to extract it.

This instance is yet another in a series of conflicts between hardware/software manufacturers and users, where the question asked every time but still unanswered remains: Who really “owns” the device, the user or the manufacturer?


Apple goes to court over exploding iPod Touch

Mon, 16 Mar 2009 01:45:00 +0000

No matter what type of portable devices you carry around you certainly don’t want them to explode on you. Unfortunately, as we have seen in the past few years, there is always the small possibility of portable batteries overheating or having some other issue. Sony’s defective battery scandal was just one of many reminding us of that, and there have been isolated reports here and there about batteries that catch on fire or even explode. Even if it's a one in a million chance, it only takes that one incident for an irate customer to file a lawsuit. That's exactly what happened to Apple, in regards to an iPod touch that supposedly exploded, and must now face the courts.

We've seen several of these cases before, though many of them ended up being an instance where the device had a clone battery not sanctioned by the manufacturer or some other issue. Given that the iPod Touch doesn't have a user-replaceable battery, though, this case is likely to get more attention. The lawsuit isn't asking for millions upon millions of dollars, which most do, but rather less than a quarter million – a more reasonable figure, but one that Apple is still likely to defend themselves against. The company of course has issued no comment on the matter, but it will be interesting to find out the details of the exploding iPod.


Microsoft details new changes to Windows 7

Mon, 16 Mar 2009 01:43:00 +0000

Following on from its previous update, Microsoft has unveiled 27 more changes it plans to make before upgrading Windows 7 from beta to release candidate. Once again, these are small tweaks based on user feedback aimed at improving the desktop experience, and more such adjustments are expected to come as Microsoft rushes to get their next operating system out the door.

This time the company has made some usability tweaks to how the taskbar thumbnail overflow feature works, modified the Control Panel Jump List so that it offers quick access to recently used items, and particularly focused on improving several aspects of the Windows Explorer file manager. Interestingly, Microsoft also decided to trim the shutdown and logoff sounds to gain up to 400 milliseconds because “every little bit counts.” The rest of the changes involve a number of different performance and operating areas, you can check out the full list on the Engineering Windows 7 blog.


Opera tests server-side optimization technology

Mon, 16 Mar 2009 01:42:00 +0000

Opera has unveiled its latest innovation for faster browsing and posted a test version for those who would like to take the technology for a spin. In a nutshell, Opera Turbo is a server-side optimization and compression technology that provides improvements in browsing speeds by compressing network traffic. This will come in handy not only for those with slow internet access but also for connections with a monthly cap or people on a pay per usage plan.

When turned on, Opera Turbo will display the average compression rate along with the amount of bandwidth saved at the bottom of the screen. The company warns that, as a result of compression, images on a website may appear with a considerably lower resolution but the layout and text will look exactly the same. Also, for those worried about their privacy, Opera assures them that encrypted traffic will not go through their servers.

This is a limited time release but the company hopes to eventually make Opera Turbo a part of its desktop client. It should work with any type of connection. However, to get the most out of it, Opera claims users need to be on a situation with limited bandwidth.


Free POP3 access hits Hotmail users worldwide, finally

Mon, 16 Mar 2009 01:41:00 +0000

Microsoft began rolling out free POP3 support to Windows Live Hotmail users back in January, albeit only on a few select markets. The company had previously offered this feature by asking users to pay $19.95 a year for a premium “Hotmail Plus” account, but with other online email services such as Gmail and Yahoo allowing it free of charge, Hotmail had to follow suit eventually – and it only took them a few years.

In all fairness, Microsoft has been offering a free way for synchronizing web services with offline clients since last year using their proprietary DeltaSync protocol. Another alternative for users is to use the Windows Live Mail desktop client which has built-in support for Hotmail. Neither solution, despite having their advantages over POP3, is more commonly used and accepted than the latter protocol.

Thus, those who had still been waiting for the update to hit their country will be happy to know that it has finally rolled out to every customer. Check out the details on how to setup your email client after the break.

POP server: (Port 995)
POP SSL required? Yes
User name: Your Windows Live ID, for example
Password: The password you usually use to sign in to Hotmail or Windows Live
SMTP server: (Port 25 or 587)
Authentication required? Yes (this matches your POP username and password)
TLS/SSL required? Yes

VIA launches 1080p-capable chipset for netbooks

Mon, 16 Mar 2009 01:40:00 +0000

Via has launched a new chipset today described as a highly integrated ‘media system processor’ that meets the needs of today’s netbooks and other mobile devices. Dubbed VX855, the new part offers support for the Via Nano, C7, and Eden processor lines at 400 to 800 MHz FSB speeds while also integrating a DDR2 memory controller that handles up to 4GB of RAM and several input/output capabilities (including support for up to six USB 2.0 ports) in a single chip.

A new Chrome9 HCM graphics engine is also present to provide some modest 3D graphics – this is still a DirectX 9 part. Its main selling points, however, are its ability to deliver 1080p video playback while using a maximum of just 2.3W of power. The hardware supports a variety of video standards, including H.264, MPEG-2/4, VC-1 and WMV9.

Although it seems a bit unnecessary for a netbook to be capable of 1080p video decoding, considering the lack of a large display, it is a feat that Intel's current netbook platform is still unable to claim. Nvidia’s Ion platform, on the other hand, does offer such functionality but we've yet to see a retail product using it. Via could take advantage of this if it can get the VX855 chipset into a netbook soon.


OLPC to use ARM processors on the XO-2?

Mon, 16 Mar 2009 01:39:00 +0000

The OLPC foundation has hinted today that it might be dropping x86 processors in their next generation XO-2 laptops in favor of an ARM based solution. Apparently the move is aimed at improving battery life while cutting costs, using a system-on-chip design, but this could also come at the expense of losing compatibility with Microsoft Windows operating systems.

The current XO model already uses an average of only 5 watts but the company claims power draw is still their biggest problem. A typical ARM processor, on the other hand, uses significantly less than a watt. Microsoft has traditionally declined to make a full-blown Windows OS for ARM, but then again, as Nicholas Negroponte states, the XO-2 is still 18 months away from release and a lot can change in that time frame.


IE8 release date set for March 20?

Mon, 16 Mar 2009 01:38:00 +0000

The next (and potentially last) iteration of IE8 has been reviewed many times, demoed across several platforms and anticipated by many for a variety of reasons. Throughout development Microsoft has never given a solid release date for the browser, though there's been a lot of speculation that it would be out sometime this month. Now, however, Microsoft Taiwan representatives are offering a more specific date saying that the local version of Internet Explorer 8 will be released just over a week away, on March 20.

If true, it could also mean that the company has already ended development on the browser and is planning to unveil its final version, stateside, at MIX09 the day before. This is supported by the fact that, in the most recently leaked builds of Windows 7, the version information of IE 8 in the About screen does not reflect a release candidate status. It also means that IE7 has had a development lifespan of only two and a half years, compared to about five for its predecessor, and it can easily be said that the success of other browsers (most notably Firefox) fired up Microsoft's development team to try and keep up.


Can Mozilla survive without Google?

Mon, 16 Mar 2009 01:36:00 +0000

Is Mozilla in danger of losing their biggest financial backer? The creator of the Firefox browser considers that a possibility. Currently, Mozilla sources nearly all of their monetary support from a partnership with Google, providing them with the top spot for searching, and in turn receiving a nice financial kickback. All in all, Google is responsible for footing nearly 90% of Mozilla's funds.

The reason Mozilla sees themselves in danger is due to Chrome. It's possible that due to Google pushing their own browser, they may not see any incentive to continue funding Firefox development. If Chrome usage rises to significant levels, Google may want to redirect their resources, after their three year contract with Mozilla expires in 2011. The search giant hasn't commented on any plans they have, though there's still a substantial benefit in working with Mozilla. After all, Chrome has yet to really take off and Firefox has a very large market share to play with.

The bottom line, as I see it, is that Firefox was not born with Google in mind and the browser will certainly not disappear should Mozilla suffer a massive revenue loss. A change in business, for sure, and it is also possible that development would be affected. Google may be king of search, but there are still other players, such as Microsoft and Yahoo – and there's nothing preventing Mozilla from working with them as well.


News around the web: Battery that 'charges in seconds'

Mon, 16 Mar 2009 01:34:00 +0000

Battery that 'charges in seconds' @ BBC News
Scratch-proof cars on the way? @ Reuters
Q&A: The robot wars have arrived @
The Untold Story of the World's Biggest Diamond Heist @ Wired
See more articles and reviews.

Five years ago in TechSpot:
Jobs draws $1 paycheck again

SuperTalent Godfather Series 16GB USB Drive Review @ PCSTATS
Super Talent The Godfather 16GB USB Flash Drive Review @ OCC

CrossFire vs. SLI @ InsideHW
ATI Budget GFX Overview @ Driverheaven
XFX Radeon HD 4870 XXX 1GB video card review @ Elite Bastards

Evolution Gaming Gear MP2 Mouse Pad @ Overclockers Online
An Interview With The Developers Of FFmpeg @ Phoronix

FiiO E3 & E5 Portable Headphone Amplifier @ techPowerUp

Power Supplies
Topower Powerbird 1100 SE Power Supply @ Pro-Clockers

Cooler Master ATCS 840 @ PureOverclock
Xigmatek Achilles S1284C CPU Cooler @ TweakTown

Music Players
SanDisk Sansa slotMusic Music Player Review @ Futurelooks

A look at DDR2, DDR3 and SSD At Cebit 2009 @ Madshrimps

ECS 945GCT-D @ Legion Hardware
Gigabyte GA-MA790GP-DS4H AM2+ Motherboard Review @ Legit Reviews

Casio EXILIM EX-FH20 Digital Camera @ HardwareZone


Apple set to unveil iPhone OS 3.0 next week

Mon, 16 Mar 2009 01:26:00 +0000

Apple has sent out invitations today to a press event where it will provide a sneak peek at the iPhone 3.0 operating system. Few details are available at the moment but, of course, speculation on what the update might include is already off and running. There are plenty of features iPhone users have been clamoring for since its release, such as Bluetooth stereo audio as well as native support for MMS and copy/paste functionality. Apple could also introduce tethering via Bluetooth and USB.

Perhaps the most significant enhancements the company could make to the device would be multi-tasking or the ability to run self contained web applications – the timing would be just about right to slow down all the hype behind the Palm Pre. Whatever it is that Apple plans to unveil we will know for sure on March 17. In the meantime, what are you hoping to see in iPhone OS 3.0? Let us know in the comments.


YouTube works with Hollywood agency for new content

Tue, 03 Feb 2009 03:33:00 +0000

YouTube's video profile is set to expand, following a deal with the William Morris Agency. At its core, the agreement would see more content that doesn't make it to prime time television or movie screens released on YouTube. Some frustration has developed with William Morris, along with YouTube, over a lack of newer and fresher content available. Even with ad-supported videos, big media giants have been reluctant to release much on the video sharing site, for a variety of reasons.

The benefit for YouTube is to get more “premium” content, which allows them to ultimately generate more advertising revenue. Ad-generated revenue on YouTube is lower than what Google expects, primarily because the majority of videos on YouTube are submitted by individuals, not by companies. This William Morris deal could result in “made for YouTube” videos with professional actors, an attractive beacon for the service and a way for money to be generated through ads. This is all around good news for YouTube, and I expect that we'll see only more of this in the future, though hopefully not at the expense of what made the site popular in the first place: user generated content.


Console sales: Wii leads, PlayStation 3 closes in on 360

Tue, 03 Feb 2009 03:32:00 +0000

New information on how well the current generation of consoles is doing has been posted. There are two interesting things to note this time around, the first of which is the sheer number of consoles Nintendo has managed to deliver. The most recent figure puts the Wii at nearly 45 million sold worldwide, an impressive number no matter which way you look at it. A little under 18 million of those were sold in the U.S., showing that the Wii has a wide international appeal which is contributing to the console's success. From the perspective of the U.S. alone, it is number three for all-time sales, trailing the Nintendo DS and the PlayStation 2, which still remains number one.

The other interesting thing to note is the shortening difference between the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3. The 360 is no slouch, sitting at around 28.5 million units worldwide. Their sales have not stopped, though they certainly have waned, which may be due to the PS3. Sony's beast has seen a growth spurt of sorts and now touts over 21 million consoles sold, narrowing the game between themselves and Microsoft to only around 7 million. A taste of things to come or merely the market filling out? This is a bit hard to predict at this point, as both Microsoft and Sony have a lot of things going for them.

Neither Sony nor Microsoft, however, can really hold a candle to Nintendo at this time. The Wii is still outselling both consoles at nearly a 2 to 1 ratio. Can that continue for very much longer? Sony's biggest hurdle, in my opinion, still remains their price. Microsoft has the cheapest console and Nintendo has the greatest sales, whereas Sony has both the highest price and the lowest sales. While it's not completely that simple, it's not a coincidence either.


Download of the Week: Windows 7 Beta

Tue, 03 Feb 2009 03:30:00 +0000

With less than two weeks remaining until the general availability for Windows 7 Beta downloads ends (well, at least from the official site) we wanted to encourage those who may be waiting for a final release to go ahead and give it a try. Of course, this being a beta we wouldn’t recommend using it for any critical stuff but, if you are anything like us and enjoy tinkering with new software, then Windows 7 is definitely worth a look if just for its revamped taskbar and improved window management.

The user interface received some welcome changes, with elements that are both pretty and useful, such as the new jump lists, live thumbnails and Aero Peek. Microsoft also put a lot of work into making backups easier, simplifying the task of setting up networks and sharing media, and tweaking the Windows Explorer so it feels more intuitive. While the release isn't bug free, overall it is pretty stable for a first beta and certainly feels more responsive than Vista. It is also said to be feature complete.

Should you decide to give it a try, a copy of Windows 7 is available in both 32-bit and 64-bit form. Also, to get you started, we have posted a guide to dual boot Windows 7 with XP/Vista in three easy steps, and another one to reverse the process in case you want to go back to your single OS setup. Minimum requirements detailed after the break.

Minimum recommended specs:
o 1 GHz 32-bit or 64-bit processor
o 1 GB of system memory
o 16 GB of available disk space
o Support for DirectX 9 graphics with 128 MB memory (to enable the Aero theme)
o DVD-R/W Drive

Apple pulls MacBook graphics update

Tue, 03 Feb 2009 03:29:00 +0000

After numerous complaints over flickering on external displays, Apple crafted a patch for MacBook users that would supposedly fix this. It was deemed a software-fixable problem, and it only cropped up when using integrated GPUs as opposed to discrete GPUs. Unfortunately the patch seems to have made the problem worse and, as a result, Apple has made the decision to pull the update for now, while they look into the true cause of the problem.

Complaints started to appear on Apple's boards post-update indicating that for some people the problem was still around, while others found it was amplified. Given that some people actually found the fix to work as designed, it is possible the problem is wider in scope than Apple realizes, with multiple types of hardware being affected. Apple is not yet sharing if it actually is a hardware problem or a driver/software issue.


AMD releases Catalyst 9.1 drivers with full OpenGL 3.0 support

Tue, 03 Feb 2009 03:28:00 +0000

AMD has unleashed its first update to the Catalyst driver pack for this year, version 9.1, which comes complete with full OpenGL 3.0 support on Radeon cards and a host of bug fixes. Among the long list of changes mentioned in the release notes are fixes related to the Catalyst Control Center, video playback, general stability, and other miscellaneous software. AMD does not mention any particular improvements in games but some slight gains in Crysis and FarCry 2 have been reported. The new Catalyst 9.1 driver package is available right now for Windows Vista, Windows Vista 64-bit, Windows XP and Windows XP Pro 64-bit.

Linux users also get some interesting new features, such as Hybrid CrossFireX support for systems featuring an AMG 780G/780D and an ATI Radeon HD 3400 or HD 2400 series GPUs, support for Ubuntu 8.10, MultiView and full OpenGL 3.0 support. Similarly, you can get these drivers in both 32-bit and 64-bit flavors.


Xbox 360 a gold mine for Netflix growth?

Tue, 03 Feb 2009 03:27:00 +0000

Netflix reaching out beyond just the PC as a streaming platform was a tremendously good move for the company – most people do not want to sit in front of their PC when watching a movie or shows. Now that they have the Roku and third-party hardware with streaming options, Netflix has seen a surge in new accounts. The Xbox 360 however has been cited by analysts as a huge player in that, perhaps the most significant one, and will continue to be so.

With at least 10 million Xbox Live Gold subscribers, they might be right. You already have an audience that doesn't mind paying for online services and makes use of their console on the Internet often enough. In addition, you have the unknown number of Xbox Live Silver subscribers, who might see the addition of Netflix functionality to be all the motivation they need to subscribe. All in all, the estimate is that Netflix might gain an additional 1 million customers, making the 360 trounce even their own Roku for streaming subscribers.

Now, if only Netflix can solve the issue of having nowhere near the streaming selection that their standard DVD library boasts. For all of you Xbox 360 users out there, have you made use of the Netflix streaming service on it, or would you if the selection was better?


Palm's VP of design shows off Pre features

Tue, 03 Feb 2009 03:25:00 +0000

If there is one smartphone shaping up to actually pose a threat to the iPhone behemoth, it has to be the Palm Pre. The device produced quite a great deal of buzz at CES earlier this month. The completely reworked webOS operating system runs fast (at least telling from the footage we’ve seen so far), the user interface seems really polished with great attention to the usability front and, unlike the iPhone, it offers true multitasking allowing you to switch between active apps. (object)


They have also paid a lot of attention to the industrial design and even packaging. In a couple of recently posted videos with VP of design Peter Skillman we can see some of that along with a hands-on demonstration of the Touchstone inductive charger and other cool features you may have missed, such as the video player and the Amazon music store. Check out a second, 25 minute video after the break.


Higher capacity Intel SSDs to arrive in Q4

Tue, 03 Feb 2009 03:25:00 +0000

Following the release of X18-M and X25-M solid state drives for general consumers late last year, and later on an X25-E Extreme variant for the enterprise market, a recently leaked roadmap suggests Intel has plans to broaden its SSD line with higher-capacity models in the fourth quarter of 2009.

According to the roadmap, Intel will double the size of its current X25-E drives to 64GB and 128GB, while introducing a new 320GB model in its mainstream X18-M and X25-M series on top of the current 80GB and 160GB capacities. VR-Zone notes that the upcoming drives will all use 34nm flash memory chips – which is a sizeable shrink compared to the current 55nm process technology – and updated controllers to improve performance. There is no mention of an actual release date or pricing for the drives nor has Intel offered any comment as to what performance improvements we can expect.


Google and partners to expose network meddling

Tue, 03 Feb 2009 03:24:00 +0000

As promised several months ago, Google and a group of partners have formed the Measurement Lab platform, an open project of distributed servers meant to help researchers gauge just how well an internet connection is working and conversely help customers determine if their ISP is blocking or throttling particular applications.

As part of the plan, Google will provide M-Lab with 36 servers in 12 locations in the U.S. and Europe to run a set of tools which initially include: a network diagnostic tool, which reports the upload and download speeds and also attempts to determine what problems limited these speeds; a tool to detect whether your ISP is performing application-specific shaping; and network and path application diagnosis (NPAD), which diagnoses some of the common problems affecting the last network mile and end-users' systems.

Google insisted that the effort was not just another means to push Net neutrality and said it believes that consumers should have the right to clearly understand the exact nature of the connection they’re paying for. To help with that goal, M-Lab says two additional tools should arrive shortly, DiffProbe and Nano. The first will attempt to detect if an ISP is classifying certain kinds of traffic as “low priority” (a technique Comcast began using not long ago), while the latter will attempt to detect if an ISP is degrading the performance of a certain subset of users, apps, or destinations.


Weekend tech reading: Intel Atom could hurt the hardware and software industries, says Nvidia

Tue, 03 Feb 2009 03:23:00 +0000

Nvidia CEO says Intel's Atom could hurt the hardware and software industries's Mark Spoonauer sat down with Nvidia CEO, Jen-Hsun Huang, who had some very outspoken things to say about Intel's Atom processor, including "Atom could potentially hurt the software industry." TG Daily.

Adobe, Apple working together on Flash for iPhone Once thought to be building Flash for the iPhone mostly on its own, Adobe has mentioned at the World Economic Forum that it's not only continuing work on the animation plug-in but has teamed up with Apple to make it a reality. Apple Insider.

"This site may harm your computer" on every search result? If you did a Google search between 6:30 a.m. PST and 7:25 a.m. PST this morning, you likely saw that the message "This site may harm your computer" accompanied each and every search result. This was clearly an error, and we are very sorry for the inconvenience caused to our users. Google Blog.

What's Behind the First 3D Super Bowl Ads Two spots will debut on Sunday: a 30-second trailer for the DreamWorks animated movie, Monsters vs. Aliens, and a second spot highlighting Sobe LifeWater energy drinks. A 3D-encoded version of the NBC show "Chuck" will be shown the day after the Super Bowl. ExtremeTech.

Swiss police spy marijuana field with Google Earth Swiss police said Thursday they stumbled across a large marijuana plantation while using Google Earth, the search engine company's satellite mapping software. Associated Press.