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The Daily Slash: December 3 2010

Wow what a freaking wild day – phones exploding, ‘Splosions being announced, and we get announced to a [Google Chrome event] for next week! This really gets me pumped up. Events are the best. There’s breakfast there. Also today we get our hands on a [ONA Union Street Camera and Messanger bag], review a [simplehuman sensor can] (for electronic garbage tossing!), and scream like little girls over the Android release of Pocket God. There’s a new smart gun announced for use by US troops in Afghanistan and KISS re-releases their epic coffin line (coincidence?) Philip Berne writes an epic take on [Hannukah and the Hobby Lobby], and NOOKcolor has an SDK released for chúng tôi this and MORE on The Daily Slash!SlashLEAKAGE

As this Wikileaks popularity surge unfolds, I for one would like to see at least everyone aware of how awesome certain elements of this story are. Of course, ideally it would be neat if everyone read all billion and a half pages of the leaked documents WikiLeaks has released so far, but you know good and well most of that stuff will end up being saved on people’s computers and never peeked at again. On the other hand, these meme-worthy details of the situations that are unfolding as WikiLeaks falls under scrutiny WILL be read. What’s neat today? The fact that now two of WikiLeaks servers are hosted by a group called Bahnhof. This Swedish internet carrier runs no less than a data center housed in an undeground, granite surrounded World War 2 era bunker in the downtown area of Stockholm. Bahnhof’s chief executive Jon Karlung aims to keep these servers open and up, no matter the international pressure to shut them down: “Swedish laws apply in Sweden. Only the proper authorities can shut this down. There have been no such claims, … We’re confident that we can continue to operate the servers.”

[Via Forbes]

R3 Media NetworkAndroid CommunitySPB TV v2.0 released: Free mobile TV with VoDSamsung grabs US Android sales top-spot in Q3 2010Dell Streak gets battery meter tweakGameloft’s Dungeon Hunter for Android goes free for one day onlySamsung hit 1m Galaxy Tab sales early; predict 1.5m by end of yearAndroid Market gets new Similar tab for some usersGameString brings Warcraft to Android [WOW]Best Buy offers free Android phones for ChristmasT-Mobile UK Responds to delayed Galaxy S 2.2 UpdateAndroid Flash Player Updated 10.1.105.7Logitech Revue Booted to Recovery Mode [HACKS!]Motorola Droid 2 Reportedly Explodes, Injures Man [BLOOD]SlashGearSony BRAVIA KDL22PX300 integrates PS2 and 720p HDTVUFOs mentioned in WikiLeaks cables confirms Julian AssangeTxtr ereader reportedly erasedCLEAR Modem with WiFi wants to replace your DSLSony Ericsson LiveView [REVIEW]Uranium soap glows radioactivelyJapanese battery makes power from vibrationsGSLO applies to Apple MFi program for Peel 520Professor in NYC installs camera in headOrange offers cheap subsidized iPadSpeck offers new PixelSkin HD case for HTC HD7 smartphone [SUPER CUTE]Prosecution in Xbox 360 modder case drops chargesBest Buy offers free Android phones just in time for ChristmasFTC testifies before Congress on Do Not Track listKaleidescape debuts Cinema One movie serverGoogle +1 social network now involving Sergey Brin?Vonage offers users free calls to Santa for ChristmasInventec HP webOS tablet & Oak Trail slates in Q1 2011; ASUS Core i5 tablet by end of year tippedGoogle pays $1 compensation in Street View privacy caseWikiLeaks: Amazon denies government pressure; DNS yanked & servers moved to SwitzerlandParrot AR.Drone gets grounded in new teardownmophie Juice Pack Plus for iPhone 4 packs biggest battery so farONA Union Street Camera and Messenger Bag hands-on [FEATURED]MS. ‘Splosion Man Set for Fall 2011Chrome Event Announced by Google Team for Publishers [FOLLOW US LIVE DAY OF]simplehuman sensor can [REVIEW]KISS Coffin Re-Introduced via Eternal Image Inc [ROCK AND ROLL]XM-25 Airburst Smart Gun Fielded on US Troops in AfghanistanRearview Cameras Required in All Cars by 2014, So Says USA Transportation DepartmentRock Band Reloaded Announced by EA Games for iPhone and iPadPocket God App Available Now on Android, Soon for Windows Phone 7NOOKcolor SDK for Developers Now Available [GO GO DEVELOPER MAGIC]Twitter Power and the Hobby Lobby [COLUMN]iFan Charges your iPhone Thanks to the WindDARPA’s Transformer Project Should be Finished by 2024Apple Confirms no Trial Software or Demos in Mac App StoreCongress Passes the CALM Act, TV Advertisement Sound Soon to be RegulatedRedEye universal remote update adds universal browser support, new iPad app

You're reading The Daily Slash: December 3 2010

Playstation 3 Vs. Xbox 360 Price Fight, June 2010

As rumors of price drops and pack-in reconfiguring swirl ahead of E3, how are things stacking up value-wise between Sony’s PS3 and Microsoft’s Xbox 360? Here’s the latest breakout chart, with the usual caveats about consumer preferences (you want the one thing, someone else wants that other thing, etc.). Maybe you don’t need wireless and an Ethernet cable’s enough. Maybe you think paying $50 a year to play games online is criminal. Don’t read these as bottom line prices, but use the chart as a build-it-yourself tool and craft your arguments accordingly. Prices for systems and components were taken from Best Buy, accessed on June 4, 2010.

Points of clarification: The PS3 hard drive is user-swappable for anything that meets the standard laptop 2.5-inch SATA spec. While I haven’t included larger hard drives in the chart, 2.5-inch SATA 500GB hard drives retail for between $70 and $90. The Xbox 360 uses proprietary Microsoft-enclosed hard drives and won’t allow upgrades beyond 250GB.

The PS3 uses an internal 802.11b/g wireless chip, while the Xbox 360’s external USB wireless adapter offers the more recent 802.11n spec.

The PS3’s HDMI connection offers the 1.3a spec, which yields higher data transfer speeds, a new expanded color format called “Deep Color,” automatic audio syncing (lip syncing), and Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio support. The Xbox 360 supports the older HDMI spec 1.2. In practice, the only functional difference given current TV and broadcast limitations would be the Dolby/DTS-HD spec, and then only in relation to lossless, uncompressed audio situations, such as Blu-ray video playback. For more on this, see here.

RJ45 is shorthand for Ethernet. CVBS stands for “Composite Video, Blanking, and Sync” (the lowest quality video cable, only a step above coaxial RF). YPbPr is shorthand for Component Video, and refers to the discrete green, blue, and red video plugs (component is the second-highest quality video cable, next to HDMI).

The Xbox 360 Arcade comes with 5 arcade games, while the Xbox 360 Elite is available in two $400 bundle configurations–one with Splinter Cell: Conviction, another with Final Fantasy XIII ($60 each if purchased separately). The Elite bundles also include a 250GB hard drive (instead of 120GB), and two wireless controllers (instead of one).

Both Xbox 360 models (Arcade, Elite) come with Microsoft’s Xbox LIVE Silver membership, which basically allows you to create a Gamertag and message friends. If you want Netflix, Facebook, Twitter, and online multiplayer support, you’ll have to upgrade to Xbox LIVE Gold, which costs $50 a year, e.g. $250 for five years. The PS3 currently offers online services including competitive multiplayer at no additional cost (though a “premium” service may be in the offing).

Some retailers sell refurbished systems for considerably less money. GameStop, for instance, sells a 40GB PS3 refurbished for $250, a 120GB PS3 with God of War III for $374.97, a model bundled with accessories for $379.97, and an 80GB PS3 refurbished for $270. Factor accordingly if you’re shopping the used market.

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: Remember that the above chart doesn’t gauge the “soft” value of features like Xbox LIVE or PlayStation Home, or how having a network of friends clustered on a given system influences purchases.

Follow me on Twitter (@game_on)

To Slash Or Not To Slash. That’s A Server Header Question.

Uh, not that kind of slashing!

Most new SEOs won’t know the difference, thinking that if it gets the visitor there, it works, right?

200 OK – This means everything’s cool.

301 Moved Permanently – The URL you typed in is properly being redirected to a new location.

302 Found – This means your URL has temporarily been moved and found at the new location.

There are several other status indicators, but for the purpose of this article, we’ll concentrate on these three. Actually, your server header status can come back as a combination of these. For instance, if you have a good 301 redirect in place, you’ll first see a 301 Moved Permanently message and then a 200 OK message below it.

But, that’s not always the case. Sometimes, particularly on Microsoft IIS web servers, what you will get back will be totally different when you check server headers with the “/” or without it. On such servers, what you can get is a 302 Object Moved message and then the 200 OK message when you check for the subdirectory URL without the “/” included. This means that the web server automatically 302 redirects the non-slashed URL to the slashed version.

This is not good and not particularly SEO friendly. Although there are good reasons to use a 302 redirect at times, it is meant to be used as a temporary redirect, not permanent. Web sites have been known to get into trouble with the search gods for using 302 redirects instead of the 301 permanent redirect and link juice is said to be passed almost totally with a 301 redirect. Such is not the case with a 302 redirect. Again, it is supposed to be temporary.

If you do find that your non-slashed subdirectory URLs are being 302 redirected, make a point of always, always, always, using the slash at the end. Do a link audit on your site and check for this type of link and change them so that they include the ending slash.

In the long run, you and your site’s SEO will be better off. Your links will be better focused without unwanted (and unexpected) 302 redirects in the way.

Slashgear Week In Review: Week 43 2010

SlashGear Week in Review: Week 43 2010

Welcome to this week’s edition of the SlashGear Week in Review and Happy Halloween! Monday a Verizon Android smartphone for the coming LTE network was spotted. The device has no name yet, is said to support HD video capturing, and appears to have a front camera for video calls. A Dutch subsidiary of Microsoft let slip this week that Windows 8 is under construction. The next OS from Microsoft is about two years away, though no one will be surprised if that launch date slips.

We reviewed the Lenovo ThinkCentre M75e notebook this week. The computer is a workstation for business types and has a lot of performance for a good price. The Wi-Fi Alliance unveiled Wi-Fi Direct this week which allows devices to directly connect to each other using a WiFi connection. The connection will allow for the sharing of files and connecting to the web among other things.

Japanese scientists are working on a printer that is able to print out scents bringing new lifeg to the scratch and sniff stickers of my youth. The scientists apparently have a working model so this isn’t as wild as it sounds. An exploit has been discovered in the iPhone lockout screen that allows the screen to be bypassed. Once bypassed the user can access contacts and more on the device.

NASA has announced that Robonaut 2 is ready for tits trip to the ISS early next week. It’s interesting that the first robot to be sent to the ISS goes up on the last shuttle mission. Workers in the iPhone factory that Foxconn operates are claiming that they were poisioned by the fumes produced by chemicals used for the screen in production of the iPhone. The fumes reportedly came from chemicals used to treat the screens and left some workers in the hospital

We made our own unboxing video for the Samsung Galaxy Tab tablet this week. We think this thing has a better chance than Steve Jobs is giving it and all 7-inch tablets. Barnes & Noble’s new Nook Color hit this week and it was felt up on film around the web. The thing runs Android and has a color screen making it one of the more interesting eReaders on the market.

Oakley showed off the sweet Tron: Legacy 3D glasses in cool Tron printed Gascan frames. The glasses wrap around for a comfortable fit and will work with any 3D movie at the theater. HP is set to ship its Slate 500 tablet computer on November 17. The device has an 8.9-inch screen and runs an Atom processor.

Acer let fly this week that it would be shipping its line of tablet computers in November. The line will include tablets with 7″ to 10″ screens in the $299 to $699 price range. We spied a really cool concept device mid-week called the Google Magnify. The thing is like a portable Google Translator for any text.

We spent hands on time with the myTouch 4G smartphone this week. The device is a strong 4G contender on the T-Mobile network, but it is still limited by 4G’s scant availability. More Verizon iPhone rumors surfaced late in the week with Pegatron said to be scaling to produce 10 million iPhone 4 smartphones in 2011 for CDMA networks. Verizon also installed iTunes for iPad.

China got the world record holding supercomputer called Tianhe-1A using NVIDIA GPUs. The machine set the world record in LINPACK at 2.507 petaflops, 50% faster than the previous record. Gucci unveiled a new set of old school looking 3D glasses for folks that don’t want to wear theater glasses. They look like old aviator sunglasses and are shaped like the glasses my theater already uses.

WE showed off a video of the ViewPad 10 tablet launch from Viewsonic Thursday. The tablet has a 10.1-inch screen, runs Android, and uses an Atom processor. Panasonic announced that it was ending production of the Technics analog turntables. The reason given for ending the production of the turntable, an analog mixer, and a couple sets of headphones was poor demand in the marketplace.

We got word on Friday that Microsoft will give every one of its 89,000 employees a Windows 7 smartphone. That is one way to get rid of the iPhones in your midst. We published our review of the HTC HD7 smartphone Friday. We peg the smartphone as a solid Windows 7 offering with a good OS and a nice screen.

New stats came in Friday that show Apple is the 4th largest mobile phone vendor in the world. That puts Apple ahead of RIM and behind LG, Samsung, and Nokia. Thanks for reading this week’s edition. Have a safe Halloween!

Daily Authority: Microsoft Surface Day 💻

What we think we’ll see are new editions of the Surface Pro, Surface Book, Surface Go, and Surface Pro X.

Given we’re up to a Surface Pro 8, Microsoft’s main flagship, and the high-end Surface Book is now at a 4th edition, those two bits of hardware are some of the more polished devices.

The Surface Pro X, which is expected to have an ARM-based processor again, has seen imperfect Windows app support and a really high price tag.

Then there’s the Surface Duo, which was billed as a dual-screen Android device for productivity and performance, but was roundly seen as a terrible release.

And ahead of this week’s event, we have very solid leaks around the Surface Pro 8 and the Duo 2.

For the laptops and notebooks, they’ll be released with Windows 11, which you’ll recall is set for an October 5 release date. 

Part of the hook of Windows 11 is the promise of more optimizations for CPU performance in particular.

Surface Pro 8:

The Pro 8 coming this week has seen a stack of leaks, with the latest via a Twitter post that looks like it’s a leak from a retailer, showing the Pro 8 will have Intel’s 11th-generation Core processor on board, a slightly bigger 13-inch display at 120Hz, replaceable SSDs, dual Thunderbolt interfaces meaning no more USB-A, and it’ll come with Windows 11.

What’s significant is the 120Hz refresh rate, which ties in with Windows 11 offering a dynamic refresh rate feature. 

So, like on high refresh rate smartphones, the refresh rate will be lower when you’re reading a page and kick up to 120Hz when required, such as during scrolling, flipping between 60Hz and 120Hz to save power and performance.

But with a display firing at 120Hz comes significantly more demand on the CPU and battery life. 

The Surface Pro has never been about raw power, so seeing how this balances out will be interesting.

And, Intel’s 12th generation CPUs are expected sometime in late October though availability is likely in November, December and perhaps 2023 for anything other than the enthusiast spec desktop CPUs.

David Imel / Android Authority

Microsoft Surface Duo 2: 

We’ve seen Duo 2 leaks for months now, and new discovered FCC filings have crystallized some details, revealing 5G, Wi-Fi 6, and NFC support, which was a big omission of the original Duo.

Previous leaks suggested coming specs including wireless charging, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 processor, 8GB of RAM, 128GB/256GB storage options, an actual rear camera setup, and a 4,400mAh battery to power the dual-screens.

So, should you have any interest after the Duo’s terrible first edition? 

Well, Windows Central managed to tough out a year with the Duo 1 and detailed the good: dual-screens at the right aspect ratio are great and can be better than the Galaxy Fold line in many use cases, and the bad: Microsoft just hasn’t fixed enough software bugs, noting “Microsoft is the problem with Surface Duo.” Ouch.

The Duo 2, then, has a lot to prove: what it’s like right out of the box, and how committed Microsoft is to improving, refining, and making the very high price-tag seem worth it.

Roundup

📁 The grapevine continues to suggest Google isn’t just working on its Pixel 6 series, but a Pixel foldable as well. This summary explains the possible existence of two foldable Pixel devices, with evidence in Android 12.1 and via @evleaks (Android Authority).

⏩ Also, Google’s Pixel 6 Pro could charge fast, jumping up to 33W, and Pixel 6 wallpapers have leaked (Android Authority).

⚡ Ikea’s $40 pad adds built-in wireless charging to almost any table (The Verge).

🔋 Volkswagen’s electric ID.4 was already good—does adding AWD via twin-motors change that? (Ars Technica).

🏠 Ultra-white paint could reduce the need for air conditioning. Like how the blackest-black paint Vantablack has special uses, white paint that reflects 98.1 percent of solar radiation is pretty handy too (Engadget).

🚀 The SpaceX Inspiration4 mission and crew returned to Earth with a splashdown on Saturday and everyone seemed pretty chuffed, capping off the first fully private mission in orbit. They had fun in space including betting on NFL and ringing the NYSE bell, and raised US$153m for the St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital as well (The Verge).

📰 The endless Facebook apology, written after the WSJ’s incredibly detailed reporting with whistleblower documents everywhere: “The Journal’s series includes internal reports showing that Facebook was fully aware of Instagram’s deleterious impact on the mental health of teen girls while moving full steam ahead with an Instagram for Kids product; internal documents inferring that the company lied to its independent Oversight Board when it said it gave only a small amount of celebs, pols and other grandees a wide berth to break its rules on the platform while, in fact, the free pass was given to millions; and the latest revelation that Facebook makes people angry, in part because of futile efforts of its leader, Mark Zuckerberg, to stop the endless rage.” (NY Times, gift link)

📡 Elon Musk says Starlink will come out of beta phase next month, though he also said it’d come at the end of summer. So, soonish? (Gizmodo).

🚗 NTSB head says Tesla must address ‘basic safety issues’ with semi-autonomous features, i.e. pump the brakes on the roll-out of “Full Self Driving” (Engadget).

📺 Emmys 2023 results: The full list of winners, many of which are streamed TV series like Ted Lasso or The Crown (CNET).

🌌 A mathematician’s guided tour through higher dimensions (Wired).

🦦 How sea otters can fight climate change (BBC).

🌩 “Can lightning really crack rocks and damage mountains like we see in fiction?” (r/askscience).

Apparently, the video comes from an old Egyptian TV drama series.

And I think the actors are trying not to laugh? 

My colleague Hadlee recommended this very similar sequence in wrestling, too.

Cheers,

Tristan Rayner, Senior Editor

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Daily Authority: 📈 Starlink, Pixel Sales

☕ Good morning! It’s Groundhog Day, stay safe out there!

Ok, what you might want to know this morning is that Elon Musk tweeted a link to news that SpaceX has a new deal:

The new Starlink Premium now promises up to 500Mbps for $500 a month.

To get it, you’ll also need a new premium antenna with “double the antenna capabilities” and an upfront cost of $2,500.

The new site dedicated to the option says: “Starlink Premium users can expect download speeds of 150-500Mbps and latency of 20-40ms, enabling high throughput connectivity for small offices, storefronts, and super users across the globe.”

And it’s still pretty flexible: “With Starlink, there are no long-term contracts, no data caps, and no exclusivity requirements.”

In addition, the new “extra-rugged” dish may work better in very hot or cold environments, and there’s 24/7 prioritized support, too.

It looks like a pitch towards businesses to buy: the answer to the perhaps shouted demand from an office or someone in the field, something like “Just get me internet that works!”

By the way, SpaceX has now launched 1,993 Starlink satellites to date, with one tracker saying that 1,468 of them are providing Starlink services, so coverage should be getting better, though the end goal is 42,000 sats.

The other thing you should know this morning is that last night, Google confirmed a good quarter for the Pixel.

Now, unfortunately, we don’t have a lot of detail: no sales figures or dollars, exactly.

But what Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai did say was: “In Q4 we set an all-time quarterly sales record for Pixel. This came in spite of an extremely challenging supply chain environment. The response to Pixel 6 from our customers and carrier partners was incredibly positive.”

So, no numbers. Google might’ve sold one more phone than the last quarter, which would give it every right to say we set a new record. That’s how records work.

But really, it seems bigger than that, and …that’s pretty much expected given Google actually tried.

The Pixel 6 series is acclaimed, the Pixel 6 alone is a great deal and you don’t need a Pro, and there’s more marketing for it than ever before — and I’ve seen that in my city and heard it from a bunch of people in different parts of the world.

Google also signed 45 carrier and retailer partnership deals, which is a key vector to getting phones into hands.

Weirdness Wednesday

For some reason, in the past month or so, Musk offered Sweeney $5,000 to take down the bot via Twitter DM. And that’s where it gets interesting: now Elon has shut down Twitter negotiations with the teen creator.

Mashable has been keeping admirable tabs on the whole thing, with Protocol doing the early yards in talking with Sweeney.

Anyway, first came the Twitter DM offering $5k, with a conversation unfolding about flight tracking via ADS-B Exchange data, and even pointing Musk towards using a free information-blocking program set up by the FAA, called Privacy ICAO aircraft address program, or PIA.

But Sweeney, whose dad works in the airline industry, has been able to keep tracking ol’ Musky.

Sweeney countered Musk’s offer by asking for $50k, or a Tesla Model 3, or an internship at SpaceX or Tesla, and was then blocked by Musk.

Anyway, the Twitter bot is still working, even with the PIA blocking program, even with some kind of weird military-level blocking going on.

Cheers,

Tristan Rayner, Senior Editor

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