? All Tech Radio Episode 347
 all tech radio show
 
 
  • Google did not infringe on any Oracle patents when it used Java software in the Android operating system, a federal jury said last week. The verdict, reached in U.S. District Court, leaves Oracle with a relatively small claim of copyright infringement, making it almost certain that the judge will not demand a harsh penalty from Google.
  • While many companies are adding tablets this summer, Cisco is getting out of the tablet business. The Ciuss tablet has been a bust for Cisco, but the video conferencing software is doing wuite well. So Cisco will continue selling the apps on the Apple and Android platforms, but will no longer create and sell the hardware.
  • Apple's design chief Johnathan Ive has been knighted. The British designer who has for the last 20 years been the creative force behind Apple devices such as the iPod, the iPhone and the iPad has been knighted at Buckingham Palace. He will now be known as Sir Jonathan Ive, holding the title of Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire (KBE), awarded for "services to design and enterprise".
  • "It looks like we've got us a dragon by the tail," NASA astronaut Don Pettit said as he captured SpaceX's Dragon cargo freighter with the International Space Station's (ISS) robotic arm. The Dragon capsule, carrying supplies for the ISS astronauts, is the first ever commercial freighter to reach the ISS. "This mission heralds the dawn of a new era of space exploration, one in which there is a significant commercial space element," SpaceX CEO and Chief Designer Elon Musk said after the launch. "I hope and I believe that this mission will be historic in marking that turning point towards a rapid advancement in space transportation technology."
  • An extremely complex virus infecting computers in the Middle East called Flame was made public today, and is likened to the Stuxnet virus, which attacked Iranian nuclear systems in 2010. "Flame can easily be described as one of the most complex threats ever discovered. It's big and incredibly sophisticated," said Alexander Gostev, Kaspersky Lab's head of global research and analysis in a blog post. "It pretty much redefines the notion of cyberwar and cyberespionage." Kaspersky Lab, a Russian security researching team, made light of the extensive virus today, saying it may have run unchecked since 2010 and continues to be developed today. Flame is a Trojan, but it's point of entry is unknown for the time being. Once in, the virus unpacks 20 modules, each with a different tool. Types of tools include a screen capturing tool, which listens for when an "interesting" app is opened - such as an instant message box - and then takes a screen shot to record your conversation. Another turns on your computer's microphone and records conversations happening in the room, within the mic's audio reach.It can also watch and record what your type, sniff network traffic and more, sending all the information to the virus creator's several command and control servers.
  • What to do with all those billions? Word on the street is that Facebook is considering buying the company behind the Opera web browser. Pocket-Lint cites a trusted source in reporting that Facebook is looking to purchase Opera Software. This source says Facebook could be about to expand into the browser space to take on the likes of Google, Apple, Microsoft, Mozilla and (as of this week) Yahoo!. If Pocket-Lint's information alone isn't enough to whet your appetite, there's more rumblings of the same variety over at The Next Web. A Facebook phone no one will be buy is next.
  • An alleged original iPad prototype with two dock connectors has made its way to eBay, backing rumors that the company was indeed looking into a tablet design that featured two docking ports. The mostly-assembled unit put up for auction on Sunday sports two 30-pin connections, one for docking in the normal portrait orientation and one for landscape, possibly proving that Apple was thinking about releasing the tablet with dual connectors before ultimately scrapping the idea for unknown reasons. Following the release of the first iPad in April 2010, photos of alleged prototype case backs were leaked showing the standard hole made for the connector near the tablet's home button as well as a corresponding hole on the device's side. At the time it was thought that the parts were prototypes of an upcoming iPad model, but it seems that they were in fact test units for the first-generation tablet. The device up for auction is a 16GB Wi-Fi only model that has been refurbished by the seller to almost-working condition. According to the listing, all of the internals are original prototype parts except for battery which was replaced after Apple reportedly had it removed. Also missing is the securing clip that holds down the display's flex cable, and the seller notes that the screen's touch functionality is sporadic.
  • GameStop is expanding its Android tablet lineup, adding the tablets to more than 1,600 stores nationwide. The gaming retailer is now selling tablets like the Asus Transformer Prime, the Samsung Galaxy Tab, and the Acer Iconia. What tablets are on sale? The Asus Transformer Prime is available now for $499.99, while the 10.1-inch Asus Eee Pad Transformer is $349.99. The Acer Iconia Tab A200 will be $299.99 now through June 2, while the 7-inch 8GB Acer Iconia is $229.99. The 10.1-inch Samsung Galaxy Tab 16GB is also available for $399.99, and a Toshiba Excite 10 will set you back $449.99.
  • Windows Live is dead. An array of products, with no natural connections to one another, have received the "Windows Live" moniker. Windows Live Essentials, for example, was the name for a suite of software products that could be installed on a PC, and included photo management, video editing and instant messaging. Windows Live Mesh provided file synchronization among one's personal computers, including Macs. And the list went on: Windows Live Mail, Windows Live Search, Windows Live Toolbar, Windows Live Family Safety, Windows Live Writer, and others. It was folly. Windows Live Essentials turned out to be less than essential after all. The company is effectively leaving behind the Windows Live brand name as it renames the products that currently feature that two-word phrase.
  • Several Internet groups are gearing up to battle SOPA-like legislation via the Internet Defense League, a new organization intended to protect the open Web. The League, spearheaded by Fight for the Future and Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian, is putting together an Internet bat signal of sorts. When the group detects a threat to the Internet - most likely via objectionable legislation - it will send supporters a snippet of code they can add to their website in order to organize the masses in protest. "Think of it like the Internet's Emergency Broadcast System, or its bat signal," the group said on its website. According to All Things D, the Internet Defense League has already won the support of WordPress, Imgur, Cheezburger Network, Public Knowledge, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, and Craigslist founder Craig Newmark. The Internet Defense League will formally launch next week when Congress returns to session. At that point, the Senate could take up the much-maligned CISPA legislation. CISPA is intended to allow private companies to share information with the government in the event of a cyber attack, but detractors worry it will give the feds an all-access pass to your private information. It passed the House in late April, and now moves to the Senate, where it could be addressed on its own or folded into other legislation. The White House has already said it would veto CISPA if it reaches the president's desk.

email from listeners:

  • Jonathan from Portland asks "Are we going to throw out our credit cards and pay by phone this year?"