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Amazon Sweetens the Deal for App Developers
October 10, 2013
Amazon this week unveiled a new program designed to draw third-party developers to the company's platform. Known as "Appstore Developer Select," the program offers incentives such as promotional boosts to developers that optimize their apps or games for the Amazon Appstore and the Fire OS mobile operating system on which the company's Kindle Fire devices run.
Galileo Gives Gadget Makers Great Power
October 04, 2013
Intel on Thursday announced Galileo, a microcontroller development board made jointly with open source hardware company Arduino for the education and maker markets. Based on Intel's recently announced Quark system on a chip, the Galileo board will be available by the end of November for less than $60, said Intel spokesperson Kari Aakre.
Valve Releases Steam Controller
September 30, 2013
Valve Software has announced the Steam Controller, the third part of its trio of initiatives designed to bring Linux-based gaming to the living room. Valve dubbed the controller "a different kind of gamepad." It features dual circulator trackpads driven by the player's thumbs. Each has a high-resolution haptic pad at its base, which is clickable, allowing the entire surface to act as a button.
IDF2013: Intel's Evolution Hugs the Inside Track
September 30, 2013
Silicon Valley loves an underdog. That's partly because such tales feed the industry's self-mythologizing and the IPO culture that attracts fresh money. To be honest, IT can boast more than its fair share of such successes: Hewlett and Packard, Jobs and Wozniak, and Page and Brin all helped make the industry what it is today. However, mythic underdogs also serve as distractions from another truth.
Apple's Big Rollout: Yawns Today, Brawn Tomorrow?
September 11, 2013
Onward and upward, or so the executive suite at Apple is clearly hoping. Tuesday's rollout of the iPhone 5c and the iPhone 5s -- and their related features and design quirks -- came as little surprise to company watchers as Apple's product pipeline has long been prone to leaks and speculation.
FOSS Devs' Biggest Complaints: Documentation and Licensing
August 29, 2013
Open source software may hold considerable appeal for software developers around the world, but that doesn't mean it's without its aggravations. While no one aspect qualifies as the ultimate reason to oppose writing or using open source code, a significant number of programmers report that poor documentation and problems interpreting licenses rank high on their list of grievances.
Amazon Gives Devs 1-Click to Woo Them All
August 27, 2013
Amazon on Tuesday released the Mobile Associates API, new software that allows app developers to create ads for Amazon products with one-click purchasing. The new release is an extension of Amazon Associates, an affiliate program created by the online retailer in 1996. Under the mobile guidelines, developers can set up ads with specific Amazon products or categories that fit into the context of the app.
Chromecast Update Snuffs Unauthorized Content
August 26, 2013
Google's Chromecast dongle may be built primarily to stream content from the likes of Netflix and YouTube, but that hasn't stopped app developers from expanding its reach. On Sunday, however, one such developer said that a recent Chromecast update had blocked his Android application. "Google's latest Chromecast update intentionally breaks AllCast," wrote Koushik Dutta, the app's developer.
Indie Games Play Starring Role at Gamescom 2013
August 21, 2013
Indie games and release dates for next-generation console games are among the big announcements that have dominated at the Gamescom conference in Cologne, Germany, this week. While the upcoming consoles, slated to be released this holiday season, have been discussed in detail, however -- including the games for each system -- Microsoft stopped short of revealing the release date for its Xbox One.
Amazon Greenlights HTML5 Web Apps
August 08, 2013
Amazon on Wednesday launched support for HTML5 Web apps in its Mobile App Distribution Program. Developers can now submit URLs for their HTML5 apps to Amazon and leverage the company's In-App Purchasing API for JavaScript. Amazon "is working towards closing the gap between the capabilities of Web apps running on its platform and those of native apps," remarked tech analyst Al Hilwa.
The Controversial, Toothless, 'Landmark' Mobile Transparency Code
August 02, 2013
Mobile device users' privacy will be safeguarded under a new transparency code of conduct created in an effort involving 40 groups ranging from businesses to advocacy groups and led by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration. NTIA Administrator Lawrence E. Strickling hailed the code as "a seminal milestone in the efforts to enhance consumer privacy on mobile devices."
Android's Crazy-Quilt Syndrome
August 01, 2013
There's no question that Android is fragmented. OpenSignal has counted nearly 11,900 distinct Android devices so far this year, compared with fewer than 4,000 last year. OpenSignal's visual representations of the number of devices and the brands are a welter of shapes and colors. Think crazy quilts sewn by demented craftspeople inhaling non-tobacco substances.
Hackers Demand Ransom for Hijacked Androids
July 30, 2013
Ransomware has made the jump from personal computers to the Android world. Android.FakeAV.C, a new breed of ransomware, has turned up in Asia -- almost half of it in India and Indonesia -- according to an alert by Bitdefender security researcher Liviu Arsene. Mobile ransomware works much like its PC kin. In a PC, a malware program seizes control of a computer and demands a ransom for its release.
Couchbase's Bob Wiederhold: Riding High on Big Data With NoSQL
July 30, 2013
NoSQL might well be called "the little database engine that could." It is quietly proving it is on track as Big Data transitions to cloud-based data storage and management. NoSQL is increasingly considered a viable alternative to relational databases, but it is still a relatively small category in a growing world of database technologies.
Microsoft Holds Out Olive Branch to Indie Game Devs
July 25, 2013
It was just about a month ago that Microsoft relaxed the rules for players of its forthcoming Xbox One, and on Thursday it made a similar concession for small game developers. Specifically, in a break with past policies, the company announced that it will allow small, independent game makers to self-publish their games on Xbox Live without the backing of an established publisher.
Security Breach Knocks Apple for an Infinite Loop
July 22, 2013
Three days after Apple took down its developer website claiming it was performing unscheduled maintenance, the company emailed devs admitting the site had been hacked and some data may have been stolen. It also posted a message on the site stating that some developers' names, mailing addresses and email addresses may have been exposed, but that sensitive information could not be accessed.
Linus, Sarah and the Linux Civil Code
July 22, 2013
Anyone who has ever spent five minutes in the Linux blogosphere is probably already well-aware of Linux creator Linus Torvalds' propensity for speaking his mind in the plainest of terms. It was just slightly more than a year ago, after all, that he dropped an "F-bomb" on Nvidia, though that's by no means been the only example over the years.
Blinding Light and Deep Dark Evil: Apple's App Store After 5 Years
July 11, 2013
The iTunes App Store is one of the most transformative Apple innovations ever, perhaps the most important to the world, and yet, despite its shiny bright flickering light of goodness, it's freakin' evil. I've been reflecting on the 5th anniversary of the App Store, and in some ways, I'm blinded by the staggering numbers and pure joy certain apps have brought to my life.
Dropbox Enlists Devs to Make It Ubiquitous
July 10, 2013
At Dropbox's DBX developer conference, the company on Tuesday announced a suite of new tools designed to make it easier for developers to bring its file-syncing technology to new devices and platforms. "We want to be sure that stuff is always available, no matter if you're on your laptop at work, a tablet on a plane or a smartphone on the bus," wrote founders Drew Houston and Arash Ferdowsi.
Google May Crash Game Console Party
June 28, 2013
Hard on the heels of the arrival of the Ouya video game console earlier this week, Google may be looking to get into the action. In fact, the company is currently working on an Android-powered console of its own, according to a Friday report. Apple is reportedly working on something similar as well. "There are too many screens to deal with," said IDC's Lewis Ward.

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