Another week, another leak. Following two leaks of Windows 8.1 builds, a third version has been made available on file sharing websites today. Build 9374 doesn’t appear to include many major changes, but one new addition that Microsoft is working on is a Kiosk Mode feature. Available in the PC settings menu, Kiosk Mode appears to be a way to lock down a device to a single Windows 8-style application. Apps can be selected to launch at login, with the app lockdown in place for user accounts.
It’s a feature that’s likely designed for business users, or an embedded-like terminal that simply runs one application. Use cases could involve retail units that customers can use apps on, or business devices that allow employees to run a…
Samsung rolled out the world’s largest 4K ultra-high definition TV (UHD TV) Monday at CES 2013, offering four times the resolution of 1080p high-definition d… Video Rating: 5 / 5Related Posts:
Microsoft is putting its SketchInsight interactive whiteboard system on display at the company’s TechFest event this week. Designed as a system for storytelling, SketchInsight is a prototype project straight out of Microsoft’s research labs. SketchInsight simply lets you tell a story using interactive sketches on a whiteboard. In Microsoft’s demonstration the company shows how you could use this to present a story by drawing sketches that turn into animations.
The system can mine data from a database and suggest options for charts, diagrams, and other visualizations. It’s really about presenting data in a meaningful way. Microsoft has clearly analysed traditional meeting scenarios with spreadsheets and PowerPoint presentations and has…
Question by Kianaat: What degree should I take(some sort of engineering) if I want to learn how to build things like Tony Stark? I want to learn robotics…of course like Iron man…but I also want to learn how to make things like his computerish system(the one that is 3-D, hologram, flicks of wrists and so in and so forth) I am aware not all this technology is real YET, but if I want to learn out to get on that path to someday create these technologies? Serious answers only please.
Answer by Amus the catMaybe join Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters. I heard that they have really nice programs and a great campus.
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Apple is a unique company in that even if you break down its individual lines of business and view them as distinct from the whole, it can still be regarded as immensely successful in a number of different areas. As a hardware company, it’s a success; as a software and services provider, it’s a success; and as a retail chain, it’s a success. And Apple’s physical retail presence shows such steady upwards growth that it, rather than any product, could be the site of the company’s greatest innovation over the next few years.
Speaking at a Goldman Sachs investor conference on Tuesday, Cook went into detail about Apple’s retail plans, addressing the growth and success of the company’s stores, as well as plans for expansion and changes to their deployment strategy for 2013. Asymco’s Horace Dediu visualized the numbers shared, charting the progress of key metrics like store openings, store visitors international distribution and more in a blog post yesterday.
One of the most important metrics Dediu tracked is depicted in the graph representing store visitors vs. stores open. After initially expanding their physical presence more quickly, and averaging fewer visitors, attendance quickly cut up and for the past two years, stores have been averaging around 1 million for every location open. Apple’s strategy this year involves not only opening new locations, but closing existing ones and replacing them with larger outlets, which should make for an even higher visitor-to-store ratio in the future if trends continue.
In terms of money invested in Apple’s retail efforts, we see a trend that could result in much more of the kind of innovation I alluded to earlier. The Asymco chart for spend on “Property, Plant and Equipment” shows a huge recent spike in money committed to “machinery, equipment, and internal use software,” as opposed to normal, steady growth for land, buildings and improvements to said facilities.
Since late 2009 when we begin to see the curve start to trend upwards more sharply, Apple has introduced its own iPod touch-based check out and inventory system (replacing a legacy version based on Windows CE hardware), moved to iPad-based information consoles, changed the structure of its stores to de-emphasize checkout and highlight Genius and One-to-One customer interaction, launched self-serve EasyPay shopping for customers, introduced in-store pickup, and just generally changed the way the world thinks about brick-and-mortar stores. No big deal.
Remember too that Apple’s retail leadership has been somewhat in turmoil recently. Apple’s SVP of Retail Operations Ron Johnson, largely credited with much of the retail division’s creation and success, left the company back in June of 2011. A search for his replacement ultimately resulted in the controversial hiring of Dixons CEO John Browett in January 2012, after a six-month search. Finally, John Browett was dismissed from that role in October 2012, after less than a year on the job. Apple is still looking for a replacement for Browett.Apple is making commerce more invisible, and yet winning more shopper dollars.
It may seem like lack of a clearly defined top man in retail would lead to uncertainty, but Apple Retail had its best year ever in 2012 amid all these shakeups, and CEO Tim Cook said that the retail locations in particular have helped the iPad enjoy its runaway success since launching in 2010.
Cook talked about the label of “retail” not being sufficient to describe what Apple is building with its stores, and more and more, that’s becoming true. Just like the company tries to hide elements like the file system in iOS, or deliver CE devices that aren’t upgradeable or modular, opting instead for a smooth, appealing and user-friendly outward appearance, it’s also taking commerce out of the store experience as much as possible. And yet as a reward it’s winning more customer dollars.
You can measure innovation in terms of a revolutionary new smartphone, or a dramatically different PC design, or you can measure it in the aggregate effect of a sustained effort to change an age-old practice. Apple’s retail efforts are the latter kind, and its spending patterns suggest there’s plenty more of that to come.
If you’ve been waiting to try out XBMC on your Android, it appears now is the time. While beta and nightly builds were already available, the team behind it has finally readied a release it says is “end user friendly,” ready to run on most any device. It achieves that feat by offloading video player duties to another app, in this case MX Player, in order to get around XBMC’s lack of hardware support for many devices. After sideloading the two necessary APKs we were able to get it up and running without any trouble, tossing in add-ins and playing back locally stored media without a problem. There’s a video to go along with the release (embedded after the break) but installing it yourself is probably the best way to get a feel for its video, picture and audio playback abilities.
Gallery: XBMC for Android
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Extending watches with apps is one thing if you’re building for a smartphone companion with a traditional, developer-centric app model. It’s quite another when it’s a GPS watch, and athletes are building their own apps — yet that’s what Suunto has managed with a 2.0 firmware update to its Ambit outdoor watch. The revamp uses a simple web interface to let us build free sports apps based on criteria as simple as distance and speed through to more specific measurements like heart rate and pressure. Adding predictive routines and arbitrary values allows for situation-specific code we might not get elsewhere, whether it’s estimating the finish time of a marathon or guessing just how much post-run beer is possible before the guilt sets in. On top of the new software platform, the 2.0 update brings a handful of major extensions from Suunto itself, including support for ANT+ and Foot POD sensors as well as an interval timer. The apps and upgrades help justify a relatively steep $ 500 price for the Ambit by turning it into a Swiss Army Knife for the wrist; when features are dictated more by imagination than a developer’s whims, they might just save the cost of an early hardware replacement.
Omnibot BattroBorg 20 - Takara TOMY 2.4GHz wireless remote fighting battle robot $24.99 (0 Bids)End Date: Wednesday May-22-2013 19:05:55 PDTBid now | Add to watch list WIRELESS RC SPIDER ROBOT #18144 ACADEMY SCIENCE MODEL KIT w/IR REMOTE CONTROLLER $47.00End Date: Friday May-24-2013 14:41:20 PDTBuy It Now for only: $47.00Buy It Now | Add to watch list NEW VEX Robotics Design System Transmitter and Receiver Kit - with torn box. $39.99End Date: Sunday Jun-2-2013 5:38:52 PDTBuy It Now for only: $39.99Buy It Now | Add to watch listRelated Posts:
Apple devices benefit from a huge, rich accessory ecosystem that means whether owners of its products are at a Best Buy, an airport or even a corner store, they’ve got plenty of options for cases, speakers, headsets, skins, charging cables, and more. A similar ecosystem is beginning to build up around the top devices from Android OEMs, but it still has nowhere near the reach and depth of Apple’s, and the market for Windows Phone 8 accessories is just getting started. And neither Google nor Nokia are helping things much.
Consider: Both Google’s Nexus 4 (manufactured by LG) and Nokia’s Lumia 920 ship with built-in induction charging. That’s awesome. It’s great to see this tech come to smartphones without requiring bulky external cases. But Google’s induction charging device, the Wireless Charging Orb, still doesn’t have a street date or price. And Nokia’s charging dock is ostensibly available in some markets like the U.S., but try tracking one down – AT&T’s site currently puts shipping times at one week for the Nokia Wireless Charging plate, though that may be because they’ve given away a bunch for free.
Nokia is an interesting case because it’s also partnering with JBL to deliver a sound dock (which showed up on AT&T’s website today, with no ship date information) that not only incorporates wireless charging, but also uses a combination of NFC and Bluetooth to deliver wireless audio streaming. I’ve seen/heard this thing in action, and it’s awesome, but getting your hands on one isn’t yet possible in markets where the Lumia 920 has launched. If I’m a new device owner, one of the first things I’m doing to do is look around for accessories, and the Qi tech built-in to both Google’s and Nokia’s latest devices are arguably their flashiest hardware trick, and the one likely to make the most impression on users new to the platforms.
Google already hasn’t delivered the Nexus Q media streamer, despite a lot of hype around its announcement and a few devices going out before they were fully baked. Now, to launch a phone with a “coming soon” accessory that’s needed to show off one of its core selling features seems equally frustrating.
I’m not saying these things because I’ve got a bone to pick with Nokia or Google; quite the opposite, in fact, since I think both the Lumia 920 and the Nexus 4 are exciting, innovative products from companies doing more than their fair share to keep the mobile market interesting. What I am saying is that these manufacturers need to be more aggressive about building and shipping unique and interesting accessories to help jumpstart the hardware ecosystem around their own products, not sometime later amid delays when the luster of what they’ve launched has already faded.Related Posts:
Question by kevinvw2000: How to build robotic servo with standard Radio Controlled (R/C) interface? Does anyone know where I can find instructions on how to build high torque robotic servo. I have purchased the most powerful R/C servos available and need more torque and travel. So I’m looking at building my own from scratch. I basically need it to function like a regular R/C servo but with much more torque and travel and it needs to plug into a standard R/C receiver. Thanks, Kevin.
Answer by craftmakeroneThere is a magazine I found at the Barnes & Nobel bookstore about making robots. It’s called SERVO. It’s a nice and informative magazine. My son totally enjoyed it.
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