BlackBerry maker Research In Motion (RIM) announced on Monday their intentions to be the latest wireless-device maker to step into the tablet computer market with a touchscreen device called the BlackBerry PlayBook. At the company’s annual DevCon conference in San Francisco, RIM co-CEO Mike Lazaridis marketed the Playbook as “the first enterprise-ready tablet”. He also mentioned the tablet is designed to “amplify” the experience of the company’s BlackBerry smartphones, which can pair with the tablet through a Bluetooth connection.
The BlackBerry PlayBook is the Operating System and the type of product a lot of people been wanting to see from Research In Motion for a while now, and it looks like it's going to deliver. It boasts BlackBerry integration, out-of-the-box BlackBerry Enterprise Server compatibility and security features designed to appeal to businesses as well as true multitasking, gaming and multimedia capabilities. The operating system delivers a full web experience including Flash as well as some pretty robust hardware specs:
● BlackBerry Tablet OS with support for symmetric
● 7" LCD touch screen with full multi-touch and gesture
● 1 GHz dual-core processor
● 1 GB RAM
● Dual HD cameras (3 MP front facing, 5 MP rear facing),
supports 1080 p HD video recording
● Video playback: 1080p HD Video, h.264, MPEG, DivX,
● Audio playback: MP3, AAC, WMA
● HDMI video output
● Wi-Fi - 802.11 a/b/g/n
● Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
● Connectors: microHDMI, microUSB, charging contacts
● Open, flexible application platform with support for
WebKit/HTML-5, Adobe Flash Player 10.1, Adobe Mobile
AIR, Adobe Reader, POSIX, OpenGL, Java
● Ultra-thin and portable: Measures 5.1" x 7.6" x 0.4"
(130mm x 193mm x 10mm), weighing less than a
pound (approximately 0.9 lb or 400g)
Research In Motion did not announce a release date or pricing information, but did mention that the PlayBook will not be available until next year, sadly missing the holiday season. RIM intends to also offer 3G and 4G models in the future.
Without sacrificing the BlackBerry enterprise heritage, the future of BlackBerry looks promising once again!
Mozilla Labs, pieced together with the help of the community, designed this amazing mobile phone concept named “Seabird” as part of the Mozilla Labs Concept Series. The concept is nothing short of incredible. The entire tech blog world is currently talking about it, and with good reason.
Let's start by saying that this device is purely a concept, and Mozilla has no intention of producing it. The Mozilla Seabird is a product of the Mozilla Labs Concept Series, which is an open call to share ideas about improving the Internet, Mozilla, and its Firefox browser. The Seabird is an 'Open Web Concept Phone' by Billy May, that has been refined by community feedback since its 2009 introduction. May describes the project as "an experiment in how users might interact with their mobile content as devices and technology advance."
In concept, the device isn’t too different from what is currently on the market – there’s a large touchscreen, sleek body design and camera. It does step it up a notch by including dual pico projectors to enable users to project what’s on their device to a larger screen or wall as well as an infrared keyboard for typing. The Mozilla Seabird also envisions an embedded Bluetooth dongle with could be used as a form of a 3D mouse.
While we likely won't see anything like this for some time, it's exciting to think of the possibilities. To learn more about this concept, please visit the Mozilla Labs page.
If you’re like me, you spend most of your time on the computer using your web browser than just about any other program on your machine. What matters to me are the pictures, words, music and people I connect with and not so much the software I use to get there. Sure my browser of choice is Firefox, but that may soon change.
Last week Microsoft released the beta version of Internet Explorer 9, which promises “a more beautiful web.” It is, without question, the most ambitious browser release Microsoft has ever undertaken, and despite the beta label it is an impressive product. According to Microsoft, IE9 Beta had been downloaded over two million times by the end of the second day. Internet Explorer 8 Beta, which was launched in August of 2008, pales in comparison as it could only garner 1.3 million downloads in the first five days. For years, Internet Explorer has been the top browser as far use, but lately its market share has been steadily sliding as computer users flocked to rivals such as Mozilla's Firefox, Google's Chrome and Apple's Safari. So Microsoft has a lot riding on IE9.
Microsoft has pulled it off, IE9 represents a big step forward. The underpinnings of IE9 are no secret. Microsoft has been talking since last fall about its determined effort to adhere to Web standards and embrace HTML5. It has also detailed its efforts to improve IE9’s performance compared to previous versions. IE9 comes with a streamlined interface, simpler navigation, faster speeds, superior graphics and websites that behave more like apps that are loaded on your PC. Microsoft is teaming with partners to produce sites that take advantage of the graphics chips and other components inside your computer. Among them; Facebook, Twitter, Amazon, eBay, CNN, and USA TODAY.
One drawback to IE9 is the operating systems it will work on, at least in this beta version. If you’re running XP as your OS, you’re kind of…well stuck on IE8. Internet Explorer 9 will only run on Windows7. Even if you have Vista, you won’t be able to use all of IE9’s new features.
For a closer look at IE9 or to download the beta version for yourself, visit Microsoft’s new site www.beatutyoftheweb.com. For an in depth review from Ed Bott at ZDNet visit his Microsoft Report.
It’s an unfortunately common scenario. You’ve located a hot new web developer and they’ve worked your website into something you can really be proud of. Finally it’s time to go ‘live’ and you give the go-ahead.
The new developer has a nice inexpensive web host where he’s going to set up your site. He does so and, after a few hours, you
notice no one’s getting any email. Sales reps, on the road, report they can’t connect to your VPN. Clients are calling asking why no one’s replied to their emailed order. What happened??
Your new developer, while good at graphics and web coding, doesn’t understand DNS, the Domain Name Service. DNS is what tells the Internet where to find your email server, your email Web Access, possibly your VPN, etc.
It is very common for a hosting service to offer to move your domain’s Name Servers to their own host, for the person signing up. This seems very convenient but, unbeknownst to the developer, your Name Server has been publishing the location of your email, among other things, as well as your website. He blithely moves your Name Server to the new host, which erases all the non-www records of which he was unaware, and sets up the new web site. The web site works, but everything else doesn’t.
Your company will call River Run and we’ll eventually figure out what happened, when we check for your MX (Mail eXchange) record and find that there isn’t one. At that point, we will start reconstructing your various DNS records, which are probably not listed anywhere. If all goes well, your new MX record will propagate around the Internet within a day or two, after which your email will start arriving again. Yes, a number of emails will already have timed out, returning a message to the sender that your domain does not exist.
The ONLY thing your developer needed to do to bring the new website online is to change (or have changed) the www record on your original Name Server. Your web developer should NEVER change your Name Server location without discussing it with you and with your River Run support engineer. Ideally, the developer will only provide you with the new IP address of the new site and you, or we, will make the change to DNS. Email will never be interrupted and you will have your shiny new website, without it being tarnished by a variety of sudden crises.
Part of Apple’s new software announcement last week was the integration of Apple’s iTunes Ping into the newest version of iTunes. iTunes Ping, commonly referred to as simply “Ping” is a social network that has been integrated into the largely popular music software. Described by Steve Jobs as "Twitter and Facebook meet iTunes," Ping aims to let the already-existing and rather massive audience of iTunes users “friend” each other, stay up-to-date on their friends' musical tastes, and like/comment on things found around iTunes. Another Ping feature allows users to rate bands and songs.
The main purpose of the social networking aspect of iTunes is to allow users to discover new music, follow artists, as well as see up to date comments posted by their friends. This aspect of it, is fairly similar to a Facebook or a Twitter account, but keeps all of your music information within a software program that most people already use fairly often, and some people even use daily. What is also great about Ping, is that similar to Facebook and Twitter, Ping is accessible on the go, with Ping being available in iTunes for both iPod Touches, and iPhones.
Ping will also create a custom chart showing music selections based on those followed. Basically, you can follow your friends or favorite artists and see what kind of music they are listening to. The actual activity stream consists of your friend connections, purchases, comments, and concert plans. Every time a song or album is mentioned, a Buy button is displayed, and this offers additional drop-down choices for Like, Post, Gift This Album, Add to Wish List, Tell a Friend, Copy Link, and Share on Facebook or Twitter. In a demonstration during the official release announcement, Jobs showed how users can also post videos and photos to the service, as well as search concert information and tag concerts attended.
Getting started with Ping is easy. Ping requires iTunes 10 and by default Ping is not activated. Apple must have learned from all the complaints about Facebook's privacy, by making users turn this feature on themselves. Once you install the latest version of iTunes, you can find Ping in the iTunes Store menu bar and click on Ping to set up your account. Once your Ping account is created you can then find Ping in the navigation bar to the left. For a step by step tutorial on how to activate your Ping account click here.
There are over 160 million iTunes users, all of whom are able to sign up for the new Ping service. Given the shear numbers, I can only assume Ping will be a hit, but only time will tell.