Microsoft's latest HoloLens app is an augmented reality movie maker
The developer kit for Microsoft's HoloLens ships at the end of this month, and the company is busy showing off new apps and experiences for the augmented reality headset. The latest is Actiongram,...
Switch From VR to AR With Powerful, Wireless Sulon Q Headset
The tether-free, AMD-powered device is basically like strapping a Windows 10 PC to your face.
Crytek is offering developers its VR-ready game engine for free
Crytek, the makers of such fine games as the Crysis series, the original Far Cry and Ryse: Son of Rome, has launched the latest version of its 3D game engi
You'll need an Oculus Touch to play 'Rock Band' in VR
Clip one onto your guitar and you're all set to be a virtual rock god.
Try these 5 official Google apps on your Samsung Galaxy S7 to dramatically improve your user experience
The Google Now Launcher is what Google envisions how Android should feel, look, and interact with each user. It’s one of my apps to install whenever I pick up a Galaxy device these days. A launcher will replace the user interface that Samsung gives you, and will do away with things like Flipboard in the left hand screen. It will also automatically alphabetize your app drawer which TouchWiz does not.
WD PiDrive Boosts Raspberry Pi's Storage to 314GB
Western Digital's WDLabs has a new 314GB storage device engineered just for the Raspberry Pi community.
Sony's PlayStation VR headset will cost you $399 and it's coming in October (pictures)
Speculation and rumour are over: PSVR, the virtual reality headset for the PS4, will launch in October and you'll spend $399/£349/AU$550 for the privilege.
Beyond Gorgeous Video Shows the Making of a Damascus Steel Sword
Turn it up to 8K if you can (you can’t), because this truly awesome video of master bladesmith Tony Swatton working on a Roman Gladius Sword made from damascus steel is a treat to watch. Damascus steel is basically art in a material as the layers get built, this sword is especially awesome because it combines a 93-layer damascus technique in the blade with a twisted grip.
Here are all 30 games coming to the Oculus Rift at launch in March
If you dropped the requisite six hundred big ones on an Oculus Rift, and were lucky enough to do it early so you get one on March 28, you might be wondering, "What games will I play?" The answer, as it turns out, is " A lot! " A whopping 30 games launch alongside the headset on March 28, with more to follow in April, later this spring, and beyond. New consoles typically launch with fewer than 20 games on the high end, so the fact that the first batch of Oculus games is so huge is a pretty big deal.
Instagram is switching its feed from chronological to best posts first
Filtered feeds tend to score more attention from users, as there are few boring posts that push them to close the app and do something else. And at this point, Instagram is so ingrained in people’s lives that they’re unlikely to ditch it over this change. But with Instagram and Twitter both moving to algorithmically sorted feeds, getting seen on social media will become more of a competition than ever.
Major sites including New York Times and BBC hit by 'ransomware' malvertising
A number of major news websites have seen adverts hijacked by a malicious campaign that attempts to install “ransomware” on users computers, according to a warning from security researchers Malwarebytes .
Obama to name Supreme Court nominee today
If confirmed, Obama's nominee will replace Justice Antonin Scalia, who died on Feb 13. With Scalia's death, the court is divided 4-4 between conservatives and liberals. Obama's nominee could move the court to the left for the first time in decades.
The photos you see on Instagram will soon be decided by an algorithm
Instagram told users and businesses today that their photo feeds “will soon be ordered to show the moments [it believes] you will care about the most.” Up until now, Instagram organized its feeds in reverse-chronological order. That is, the photos in your feed appeared whenever they were shared.
Apple: Founding Fathers 'would be appalled' with Justice Dept's request to unlock iPhone | ZDNet
"Specifically, the FBI wants us to make a new version of the iPhone operating system, circumventing several important security features, and install it on an iPhone recovered during the investigation. In the wrong hands, this software -- which does not exist today -- would have the potential to unlock any iPhone in someone's physical possession," Tim Cook wrote to customers in February.
Hacker charged in Celebgate case for stealing nude photos
Over the course of two years, Collins spent roughly two years running phishing scams to obtain usernames and passwords for 50 iCloud accounts and 72 Gmail accounts.
Former Google+ chief is now selling Apple Watch band heart monitors
The Kardia Band is an Apple Watch accessory designed to look after your heart, containing a nickel-sized sensor that alerts users to abnormal heart rhythms. It's the latest product from AliveCor, a startup that's built a similar (FDA-approved) sensor for smartphones, and that's run by Vic Gundotra, the former head of Google+. Gundotra — who was once told to stop tweeting after making a jibe about rival companies — joined the company last November, poaching a pair of Googlers soon after to look after AliveCor's software and hardware.
The 7 biggest myths about artificial intelligence - TechRepublic
Misunderstanding of machine learning. According to Guru Banavar, the head of the team at IBM responsible for creating Watson , the AI system that mastered Jeopardy, most people don't have a good understanding of what machine learning is. What it is, he says, is showing a system examples and having it extrapolate information from them. "We can teach a computer to recognize a car, but we can't ask that same computer, 'How many wheels does that car have?' Or, 'What kind of engine does it have?' Can you ask anything else about what this car is made of or how it is made? None of those things are possible," he said."Those are all far away."
Mossberg: The false debate between Open and Closed in tech
Just as in politics, there are passionate, long-running disputes in tech. And, in one such never-ending argument, the weapons used are the words "open" and "closed." Open is usually considered good, and closed is bad. But it turns out these words, which once really meant something, now have very loose definitions and surprising contradictions.
Google admits 25% of its traffic isn't encrypted
While Gmail, Search and Drive, you’ll be relieved to hear, are delivered entirely over secure HTTPS, the company is still battling to offer full encryption across all of the remaining products it’s tracking.
Google Doubles Chromebook Bug Bounty to $100K
Google is also extending the program to offer rewards for methods that bypass Chrome's Safe Browsing download protection features. Head over to Google's rewards page for more details on this new "Download Protection Bypass" category, and all the rules of the program. You can report any bugs you find via this form .
Now there's an app to help gun lovers find friends to shoot the sh*t with
Hearing pitches about bizarre new apps is part of the SXSW experience, but when we were contacted by a company claiming to be creating “…a social shooting experience” with a new app that lets you “find friends, compete, shoot guns,” even we were slightly stunned.
Pigeons track air pollution in London with tiny backpacks
A small flock of pigeons have been given tiny backpacks to monitor air pollution in London. The project was dreamt up by Plume Labs , a company focused on the environmental problem, and the marketing agency DigitasLBi . The rucksacks are fitted to the birds using small fabric vests, and the sensors inside are able to measure nitrogen dioxide and ozone levels. Only 10 birds are in flight at any one time, so the amount of data being collected is pretty small. However, it's still a creative way of analysing the air that millions breathe in every day in the capital.
Like Facebook, Instagram Is About to Go—Gasp—Algorithmic
Instagram also isn’t just looking out for you—it’s also looking out for its advertisers. Blau says that, at least for Facebook itself, the algorithmic News Feed has served both the company, its users, and its advertisers. “Understanding your available inventory, how engaged your users are, what the proclivity is to purchase based on exposure—all of these things are really important to the ad business,” Blau says of Facebook. “Without that algorithm, they’d have a lot less control. With the algorithm, they can fine tune things.”
All the news from Sony's PlayStation VR event
Sony held a speedy press conference at GDC 2016 to reveal details of PlayStation's virtual reality headset, including its price and the first games we can expect to see for it. Follow along here for everything announced.
The 10 Best Budget Laptops of 2016
In terms of features, budget laptops will at least come with USB 2.0 ports, and possibly USB 3.0. It should also have an SD slot and at least 802.11n connectivity. Finding a budget laptop with an HDMI port is a plus. The one feature you shouldn't always expect in this category is a touch-screen display. This may be a concern, considering Windows 10 is a touch-optimized interface, but the touchpad should be able to support touch gestures, and there are keyboard shortcuts to access Windows 10's menus.
Smart Reply for Google's Inbox app comes to the web | ZDNet
As Google noted at the time it launched Smart Reply, the feature is a handy feature for mobile users: according to Google around 10 percent of Inbox replies on mobile are written by its machine-learned system.
Instagram will start showing posts out of order, like Facebook
Instagram is testing a more personalized feed for its users, the company said today . The reorganized feed relies on an algorithm to sort images and videos based on what users are likely to be most interested in. The social media platform currently organizes posts from newest to oldest, which often leads to missing posts from friends. The new feed more closely resembles that of Instagram's parent company, Facebook.
Google's Material Design takes on some iOS accents
With a change to its Material Design guidelines, Google is now encouraging developers and designers to use navigation buttons on the bottom of the screen. Ahead of this change, all in-app navigation occurred via Android’s ‘hamburger’ menu or the static navigation buttons in Android.
Medium is now curating popular articles
But it also means Medium is more than a blogging portal, and can now be considered more competitive with Flipboard or Apple News. The top bar adds a busy feel to Medium, but it’s necessary for surfacing content, and that’s clearly where Medium is headed.
Nixon's Mission is a rugged Android Wear smartwatch for extreme sports
It's powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 2100 processor and 512MB of RAM, and it's got 4GB of internal storage for music — pretty standard guts for a smartwatch. Battery life is a solid day — again, in line with other smartwatches. Like any good smartwatch, it's got a wealth of sensors including a GPS, thermometer, altimeter, barometer, e-compass, gyrometer, accelerometer and humidity sensors.
Your feelings about March Madness, explained in charts
Below, we've explained everyones feelings about the best tournament in sports with a few helpful charts.
CrowdStreet raises $3.5 million to help real estate investors
CrowdStreet , a management tool for real estate investors, announced today that it closed a $3.5 million investment led by Rally Ventures .
Here's why 'Straight Outta Compton' had different Facebook trailers for people of different races
he “general population” (non-African American, non-Hispanic) wasn’t familiar with N.W.A., or with the musical catalog of Ice Cube and Dr. Dre, according to Neil. They connected to Ice Cube as an actor and Dr. Dre as the face of Beats, he said. The trailer marketed to them on Facebook had no mention of N.W.A., but sold the movie as a story of the rise of Ice Cube and Dr. Dre.
NYTimes Bits on Twitter
“No one is looking for another photo-sharing app.” Tech is now into coffee and clothing http://nyti.ms/1ptPVN9 pic.twitter.com/dQQ0G0tuHp
Nikon brags about its rich heritage using Fujifilm camera
In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.
This Richard Branson-backed startup failed on 'Shark Tank' — but just raised $61 million from Kleiner Perkins
And Ring's hot streak continues: On Wednesday, Ring announced it raised $61.2 million in funding from a group of investors led by the venture-capital firm Kleiner, Perkins, Caufield and Byers, bringing in one of the most successful Silicon Valley VC firms as an investor. Branson has also joined the latest round.
Deezer's music streaming service arrives on the Apple Watch
There are many ways to listen to music on the Apple Watch , but if Deezer's your streaming service of choice, then it's time to add another app on your wearable. Deezer has released an app for the smartwatch, perhaps as part of its efforts to compete with Spotify and Apple Music. It comes with a bunch of key features, including Flow, which can guess the kind of music you want to hear. You can "love" or skip tracks and play a set of songs from your library based on your mood within the app. If you press firmly on the display (in other words, take advantage of its Force Touch feature), you can see your queue or play in shuffle mode, as well. Plus, the app can access all the tracks saved on your iPhone in Offline Mode. It's now available everywhere Deezer is active, and you can get it so long as your iPhone's running iOS 8.2 or higher.
Unexpected Changes of Bright Spots on Ceres Discovered
Observations made using the HARPS spectrograph at ESO’s La Silla Observatory in Chile have revealed unexpected changes in the bright spots on the dwarf planet Ceres. Although Ceres appears as little more than a point of light from the Earth, very careful study of its light shows not only the changes expected as Ceres rotates, but also that the spots brighten during the day and also show other variations. These observations suggest that the material of the spots is volatile and evaporates in the warm glow of sunlight.
10 things in tech you need to know today
Subscribe to 10 Things In Tech You Need To Know and never miss an update!
Feds make major break in celeb nude photo hacking scandal
Collins would first send an email to a victim from an address that appeared to be from Google or Apple. That email would ask the victim for their user name and password. Once the victim replied to Collins’ fake emails, he "accessed Apple iCloud and Gmail accounts … and thereby obtained complete iCloud backups." The Justice Department also confirmed that Collins used an unnamed piece of software to download the entire contents of the users' iCloud accounts.
Shyp's eBay Integration Fixes A Major Hassle Of Making Money Off Your Unwanted Stuff
The only oddity that I've encountered is that eBay's listing process doesn't know anything about Shyp. When I'm putting up an item for sale, I guestimate a reasonable shipping fee. And in the current form of the integration, Shyp's app knows the price I specified, and that's what I get charged. It's easier to imagine a deeper integration that would let a seller choose Shyp when listing an item, specify how speedy the shipping needed to be, and get a custom estimate of the cost. Shyp says the current phase of its eBay partnership will continue through June, whereupon the two companies will figure out their next steps—and as a happy customer so far, I hope that they make this cool offering even cooler.
Why We Need To Stop Thinking Of Getting Fired As A Bad Thing
When both parties fully understand the specifications of a tour of duty, employees won’t feel as much of a need to jump ship whenever a new opportunity comes up. If they do, Yeh says they might take steps to make up for it, like work with their employer to bring in a successor or stay through the end of a mission. And the reason why is because a tour of duty isn’t as much of a contractual agreement, says Yeh, but "a moral and ethical commitment" to one another.
Why I'm not buying the Samsung Galaxy S7
That's not to say the Galaxy S7's battery is a slouch. It has wireless charging capabilities and it clocked in one of the longest lab tests results we've measured at 16 hours of continuous video playback. But some people prefer the option to swap out their batteries. Having a spare to swap in and out -- like when it's midday, the power is draining and there's no plug in sight -- is undoubtedly useful. It's also practical to have a fresh new battery up your sleeve when you're a year and some change down the road and the device's battery isn't what it used to be. (It'll be more valuable too when you resell it if you can promise a new battery.)
Fixing Mental Health In The Workplace Requires A Lot More Than A Yoga Room
It is strange that many workers feel they can’t ask their employers for help, because mental health is discussed more than ever before in today’s workplace. As everyday stress and overwork plague the American workforce, mindfulness meditation sessions and yoga practices have spread from the halls of Google to the back offices at Target and the cubicles of Goldman Sachs. Automated apps that offer therapy on your smartphone are in vogue. And at most mid- to large-sized companies, workplace wellness programs exist to promote the benefits of exercise, sleep, and a healthy diet to improve bodily health—but also to boost mood and focus. Corporate wellness is an $8 billion industry , and in some offices, things like cholesterol and blood pressure testing are becoming mandatory , raising Big Brother concerns for employees.
Oculus shows off the 30 launch titles available for the Rift VR headset
I had the chance to meet with developers and play several of the launch titles (though far from all of them unfortunately), and I’ve listed my first impressions of gameplay for some of the titles below. Many of the coolest games I tried are not available at launch but will come later when Oculus’s Touch controllers are released for the system in H2 of 2016.
Google to devs: Give Android apps an iPhone-style makeover with bottom navigation bars | ZDNet
Anything above five key destinations in the bottom bar would be too cramped. So Google recommends using the slide-out navigation drawer in these instances. It's also outlined a number of other rules regarding color, design, and text, to prevent the bar becoming cluttered and unsightly.
10 Incredible Experiences I Had Playing the Final Oculus Rift
The Climb uses the Rift’s forthcoming Oculus Touch, a pair of bracelet-sized controllers you hold, one in each hand, to simulate that signature primate feature: opposable thumbs. In the game, they control a pair of virtual hands you can move freely along a cliff wall, reaching for handholds identified by faint chalk lines. Hit a dead end and you may have to jump, terrifying lurch-of-faith moments that had me gasping repeatedly. Or dangle from one hand for too long, and you’ll lose your grip (and maybe your lunch), plummeting backwards into the waiting arms of a blessed checkpoint reload.
Star Wars Battlefront is coming exclusively to PlayStation VR
At today’s PlayStation VR press event , Sony CEO Andrew House teased onstage that PlayStation will be partnering with EA to bring about my (and everyone else’s) fantasy of Star Wars Battlefront in virtual reality.
Apple to double down on iCloud encryption
Apple is working to strengthen iCloud encryption amid its battle with the FBI over an iPhone backdoor. As things stand, the Cupertino company has access to the data backed up to iCloud, and can hand it over in cases like those over the iPhone 5c used by the San Bernardino shooter — but now it wants to change that.
How this antique technology could turn out to be the future of broadband | ZDNet
Even with the reach versus rate trade-off, the technology can be used not only between distribution points (broadband networking boxes often found on lampposts or down manholes) and the premises they connect 30m to 40m away, but also from homes to street cabinets, that tend to be a little bit further away at 300m to 400m. Without G.fast, premises at an equivalent distance to a fibre-connected cabinet would be looking at top speeds in the region of around 70Mbps to 80Mbps in a best-case scenario.
KaOS Linux releases updated ISO image: A clean, simple, and solid Linux | ZDNet
KaOS Linux is an unusual case in the world of Linux distributions. First, because it is not derived from any other distribution; second, because it is so tightly focused on the KDE desktop; and third, because it is a rolling distribution. When you put those three things together, it makes it interesting enough for me to keep KaOS Linux loaded on one or two of my laptops.
Apple Tells EU Tax Panel It `Pays Every Cent' Due in Ireland
Apple Inc., facing a European Union probe into its fiscal affairs in Ireland, told a panel of EU lawmakers Tuesday it pays all taxes due in the nation and doesn’t get an unfair advantage compared with other companies there.
Uber debuts Family Profiles to let you pay for others’ rides
On-demand car service Uber announced this morning a new feature designed to make it easier for its customers to pay for rides for their friends and family: Family Profiles. The option was one of Uber’s most frequently requested features, the company notes, and will initially go live in a handful of markets, including Atlanta, Dallas and Phoenix, before rolling out elsewhere.
Waze 'Planned Drives' will let you know when to leave for a meeting based on real-time traffic conditions
Waze for iOS is receiving an update today that introduces a new feature called Planned Drives. The team behind Waze says that this feature will help in taking out the stress of planning for an appointment or meeting, be it today or a few weeks later.
Ads on news sites gobble up as much as 79% of users' mobile data