The Firefox phone is coming to town

January 22, 2013 by  
Filed under News

The makers of popular web browser Firefox, have long been working on a mobile operating system to rival Android and iOS on the iPhone. It’s getting close to the finish line so Mozilla in collaboration with a company called Geeksphone will soon be selling two smartphones, Keon and Peak, running the new OS. The new phones are designated developer devices that will be used to test the Firefox OS and encourage developers to create apps for the system. They are expected to be released in February this year.

Firefox OS by Mozilla has been built entirely using open web standards and the new OS can also be installed on an Android device. It has been pitched as a low-cost competitor to Android, and there are also hints that the new handsets will be sold at low price-tags.

On Mozilla’s blogging site, the company says, ““We are now working on bringing the power of the web to mobile, through Firefox OS, along with all the power of open standards and an open community, and once again, we’d like to invite web developers to join us.“

ASUS PA248Q ProArt Monitor Review

January 22, 2013 by  
Filed under Components, Displays, Reviews, Spotlight

The ASUS PA248Q is a monitor designed for professionals and enthusiasts whose primary purpose is editing films or pictures, where color grading and precise measurements are the first priority for a satisfactory experience.

To that end, ASUS has a done a remarkable job of providing a pre-calibrated screen with a host of options to tweak the color settings as per your requirements. Beyond that, though, the ASUS PA248Q also provides some very useful connectivity options which make it great for daily usage by non-professionals as well.

Design

So first off, the ASUS PA248Q 24-inch monitor with an unusual aspect ratio of 16:10, giving it a resolution of 1920 x 1200 pixels. The thick black plastic housing is just 1.8cm thick around the screen, where the bottom and right edges have an etching of 52cm x 32.5cm. This is sort of useless as there’s an on-screen display of various paper and photo sizes at the touch of a button.

Menus & Navigation

The buttons are another interesting facet of the ASUS PA248Q, with seven in total. The topmost button is actually a 5-way navigation nub which would normally be used to navigate the on-screen menus. However, just pressing it will show you grid alignments in centimeters and inches, as well as paper and photo sizes. Using this allows any designer to have a realistic preview of what the finished page or photo will look like on the target size.

 

The menus themselves allow you to delve in deep into color customization including hue and saturation in six different shades, not just the regular RGB. You can setup picture-in-picture easily as well, but you have to dig into the menus a bit. To bypass all of this, however, you have two shortcut keys which can be set to PIP settings or anything else. By default these are set to brightness and contrast.

Connectivity

The ASUS PA248Q comes with a 3.5mm audio jack, DVI, VGA, HDMI and DisplayPort connectivity. Additionally there are four USB 3.0 port on the left side for those times when you need to instantly transfer photos or videos. Honestly that’s more convenient that USB ports on the PC case; infinitely more accessible than the rear USB 3.0 ports on motherboards.

Color Modes

The Standard mode worked fine, but I was personally a fan of the sRGB mode which showed true color reproduction on the lagom.nl LCD Monitor Test’s ‘Gamma calibration’ test. In fact, other important tests like ‘Contrast’, ‘Black level’, ‘White saturation’ and ‘Gradient banding’ gave near perfect results.

The Scenery mode had the hue more towards red, while also bumping the contrast and sharpness a bit. It’s good for giving pictures a more ‘punchy’ feel, but otherwise not so good. In Theater mode everything has a cool blue tint, with black levels suffering a lot. It’s fine in some movies, but not most.

Honestly the sRGB mode is great for pretty much everything, including editing pictures and video if you want some color correction. If you want to tweak things further, the ASUS PA248Q allows you to easily do that in the menus. For games and movies in general I found the Standard preset to work best, for a more dynamic feel.

Conclusion

It’s easy to recommend the ASUS PA248Q for its great color reproduction, connectivity options, and incredible viewing angles (at 178°). It may need some extra bit of tweaking to get the truest possible color reproduction, but for the price though, and even then may leave a little to be desired by true professionals. Whether you’re a video editor or competitive gamer, the ASUS PA248Q will give you a brilliant experience and great bang for your buck.

MEGA already being targeted by anti-piracy group

January 22, 2013 by  
Filed under Internet, News

With the recently inaugurated Mega.com, Kim Dotcom’s new cloud storage site is already being actively targeted by anti-piracy groups to stop it from becoming what it’s predecessor, MegaUpload had become. As Torrent Freak reports, Rovert King of Stop File Lockers has started a campaign, “to have the payment processing of all Mega resellers terminated.”

Stop File Lockers is an anti-piracy group who’s purpose is to stop file-hosting services suspected of having content that infringes upon copyrights; their latest victim being hotfile whose Paypal account is now terminated. In the case of Mega, the site uses other resellers to manage payments. So even though PayPal isn’t directly working with Mega, this campaign is aimed at the, “couple of Mega resellers [which] have PayPal and they are being terminated,” said King.

Due to the nature of its encryption, Mega cannot proactively search through uploaded files to see if the content is copyrighted or not, thus PayPal isn’t dealing with the site. “Given the site lacks many of these safety features,” said King, “We believe that Mega is no different to various other file locker services which have had various payment services canceled or suspended.”

“We haven’t and wont go after legitimate services like Dropbox – however from its inception the new Mega was never intended to be a legitimate cloud storage service as it has all the fundamental qualities of an infringing file locker service, the only thing missing at this stage is an affiliate program,” King adds.

How quickly this spirals out of control remains to be seen, since PayPal potentially sources millions of dollars to the various resellers Mega is affiliated with, an cutting off funding in this way essentially means Mega could fall face down before it even starts to be run properly.

Blackberry Z10 takes on the iPhone 5, wins

January 22, 2013 by  
Filed under Articles, News

I don’t think there’s any stronger confirmation of the Z10 we know actually being real than a comparison video of the device with the iPhone 5. And for Blackberry fans around the world, the more comforting news is that the Blackberry Z10 manages to blow the iPhone 5 out of the water in almost every compared department including voice controls.

German website TelekomPresse has the video which compares both the phones primarily with its voice controls in the German language and surprisingly, the Z10 does a better job than Siri when it comes to recognizing what the user wanted to say.  It also gives us a nice view of both the devices side by side, where the Z10 looks taller than the iPhone because of a larger screen. So far, the Z10 has been beating the competition in its beta software release so one can only imagine that the release version will actually improve upon it.

Watch the video below for more:

Thoughts?

Ashton Kutcher will attend next week’s Macworld as Steve Jobs

January 22, 2013 by  
Filed under News

Ashton Kutcher and Josh Gad, who play Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, resp., in the upcoming biopic jOBS, will attend the Macworld conference in character.

Both will kick off the San Francisco conference in a  session where they will talk about portraying the two Apple co-founders. The conference will also be attended by musician Will.iam and Intel’s Brain David Johnson.

jOBS is one of the two movies based on late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs’ life. The biopic is directed by Joshua Michael Stern and is set to release in theaters this April.

Source.

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