A group of GPS vendors and users has challenged mobile startup LightSquared's credibility in a response to the company's new plan for a hybrid satellite and LTE mobile network.
LightSquared either knew or should have known about apparent interference between its proposed LTE (Long-Term Evolution) network and receivers for GPS (Global Positioning System) before it requested a waiver from the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to operate the network, the Coalition to Save Our GPS said in a paper released late Friday. After LightSquared received a conditional waiver in January, a mandatory series of tests revealed serious interference. Read more...
Last week, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said that his company will be "launching something awesome" on Wednesday. Little additional information is available about what it could be, although we can take some educated guesses based on Facebook's priorities and plans.
Here's what we think we might hear from the social networking site when it announces its latest creation at 10 a.m. Pacific Time tomorrow at its Palo Alto, California headquarters.
Developing for several different platforms at once is definitely an unenviable task for Facebook's coders. Thus the company has embarked on a new path dubbed "Project Spartan". Essentially it's a development platform that is based in HTML5, which is supported across several platforms. Read more...
What makes PCs so popular is the range of software you can run on them. But, as always, with great power comes great responsibility. And one of the first decisions you need to make about your desktop estate is who you give the power to.
Some users may well benefit from full admin privileges, given the range of "revolutionary" tools they will be chasing you to install. But such privileges, even if temporary, need to come with a serious dose of education.
Otherwise you will find them installing everything from malware to network hogs and anything in between, none of which will make your life any easier.
Crash and burn
In some respects, then, it is good news that software that insists on running in admin mode is much less common. Thanks to a combination of developer education and user complaints about the inconvenience of privilege elevation in Vista and Windows 7, badly written software, whether malicious or not, is still the main reason Windows PCs crash. Read more...
Open...and Shut Facebook isn't necessarily the new Compuserve, and Google might not be angling to be the Hotel California of tech, but all of the big web giants seem intent on locking their users into experiencing a single-vendor web.
Facebook riled users this week by throttling their ability to export their Facebook friends' data for use with Google+ or other services, while Google dumped Twitter from its realtime search in favor of its own Google+. The web as an intersection of seemingly infinite networks threatens to become a limited patchwork of monopolized web experiences that only grudgingly talk with each other. Read more...
Microsoft's head of strategy is stepping down from the company.
Senior vice president of strategy and partnership Hank Vigil is leaving Microsoft to advise early-stage startups and focus on investing, according to All Things D.
Vigil worked with Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer and the rest of the company's senior leadership team in developing and managing acquisitions, investments, and strategic relationships. Vigil is leaving Microsoft in the fall, but will remain a "strategic advisor".
Microsoft did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but All Things D includes an email allegedly sent by Ballmer to staff announcing Vigil's exit. The story appeared on the eve of the long July 4 weekend, when most of America was taking time off for BBQ ribs and sunburns. Read more...
Microsoft has published code for the software that its roving vehicles use to collect wireless network information. The move is an apparent attempt to make Microsoft look good next to Google.
On Tuesday, the software giant proudly told the world that it had published some of the code used by the Microsoft vehicles that drive around slurping data on Wi-Fi access points and cell-tower locations. This data fuels the location-based services included with Windows Phones and other Microsoft products.
In the past, Google used its fleet of Street View vehicles to collect similar data. But at one point, Google admitted that it had been collecting not only network identifier but Wi-Fi payload data as well, and it no longer collect any Wi-Fi data. Read more...
The next version of Apple's MacBook Air, the release of which is reported to be imminent, will feature NAND flash memory with up to 400Mbps performance, about 1.5 times faster throughput of its current technology, according to a published report.
Unlike many notebooks, the MacBook Air has no hard drive or optical drive and instead uses a slim flash board for its internal mass storage device. Read more...
The state's Office of Enterprise Technology (OET) has furloughed about 75% of its 338 employees as a result of the shutdown, according to Cathy de Moll, director of planning, communications and marketing in the technology office.
The state government has 1,800 IT employees in its executive branch, including the OET staff, but it's uncertain how many overall are in layoff status.
"I think most IT staffing at the agency level is minimal, except for a few major applications, including unemployment insurance and the new ERP system that just went live on the first day of the shutdown," said de Moll.
The shutdown began July 1.
Under the rules imposed during a shutdown, government agencies are only allowed to continue "critical" services, which for IT has been defined as those providing security, networking, hosting and communications services. Read more...
For years, business intelligence and analytics tools seemed out of the reach of midmarket users. Complex and costly systems that required hardware, software, licensing and special skills were beyond the budgets and in-house IT talent pools of most midsize companies. But nowadays, with vendors offering lighter versions of their products and the rise of software as a service (SaaS), BI has become accessible to companies that previously might not have been able to afford it.
"The industry evolution toward self-service BI and SaaS BI is having a big impact on adoption in companies of all sizes," says James Kobielus, an analyst at Forrester Research. "Companies that want to do BI can adopt and provision it more rapidly at a lower cost" -- often pay-as-you-go -- "and make it available to a broader range of users with less IT involvement and lower capital costs," he says.
However, experienced users warn that even at its simplest, BI still requires a concerted effort. Read more...