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App Pick - Smart Measure

Lazer Meet Mr. Liquid Nitrogen

This is pretty cool. Some people have tried sticking LEDs and lasers into liquid nitrogen. Why? Science. That's always my excuse.

 

AOL Ditches Google for Bing

According to Microsoft, Bing is doing pretty well - at least it's not a money pit. Things like the move by AOL from Google to Bing are good for Microsoft as well. Times they are a-changing for Microsoft as they've also recently lost 100 employees to Uber. I'm not sure what is up on this front, and I don't think Google has anything to be worried about - but if this is a trend, Google may get shaken up a bit.

This expanded partnership shows Microsoft’s heightening efforts towards growing programmatic access to advertisers in its European markets. It noted in a blog post that it’s seen more than 50 percent of business in its Nordic countries turn programmatic, something that’s allowing it to take this larger step forward today.

Source: TechCrunch

Apple Muisic and Beats 1 Launch Tuesday

If you've been waiting for something "groundbreaking" in the music industry, something "innovative" in the streaming business and something "revolutionary" in entertainment, you'll be really, really excited to know that Apple is launching their music service on Tuesday. That's right. Music. Downloaded. Streamed. For a fee - and you don't actually own it. That's incredible, and I don't think their is a single company that has ever thought of streaming, subscription music services before. Oh wait, there are dozens.

In 1993 I was a Computer Science student at Indiana University when Dr Fenske gave me an opportunity to put my studies together with my love, music. He set me off writing an app on NeXTSTEP to stream music (wav) from one part of the campus to another (thanks Rob Francis). I’ve been streaming music ever since.

Source: FistFulAYen

Roku's Plan to beat Apple, Amazon & Google

The battle for the living room used to be limited to Xbox and PlayStation, but with the invention of the "Streaming Stick", the battle has expanded - and heated up. Chromecast might be the current king, but Amazon and Apple are never to be underestimated. Even with those giants in the arena, Roku has stepped up and shows us why and how they plan on bring the battle to the big guys - and expect to walk away the winner. It's a lofty goal and makes some sense. 

Still, there's one thing Roku has that no one else does, and that's neutrality. Every one of Roku's rivals, including Apple, Amazon, and Google, has a vested interest in their own content. That's why there's no iTunes on Fire TV, no Google Play on Apple TV, and no Amazon Prime on Android TV. It's also why, when you turn on Amazon's set-top boxes, Prime content crowds the homescreen, while other sources are mostly relegated to their own apps.

Source: FastCompany

Windows 10 Upgrades Cannot be Stopped

Much like Skynet, Microsoft's Windows 10 Upgrade seems to have a will of its own. While this may not really be that "big" of a deal for the average user, the fact that users have no control over the upgrade process, patches and fixes that Microsoft rolls out. If you try disabling this feature, security updates will be suspended. I'm not sure this is the hill the Microsoft wants to die on, but if the patch process is buggy, you can bet people will turn the feature off - opening themselves up to other issues - making Windows 10 a complete failure. Maybe they should re-think this strategy.

Microsoft's new OS may have a silly name, but it melds the best of Windows 7's desktop usability and Windows 8's technological advances and it's free to owners of both. And yet there's one horrible catch for free upgraders which no-one is talking about. Windows 10 introduces something new and highly unpleasant for its millions of consumers: the complete loss of control.

Source: Forbes

Mario with Unreal 4 Engine

Mario is Nintendo's timeless hit, but lets face it, the graphics are very dated - even in the latest WiiU version. YouTube user, Aryoksini has done a lot of work building an Unreal 4 version of Mario and the results are below.

 

Windows 10 - Now on Flash Drives

This isn't really groundbreaking news, however, it's also a case of 'why hasn't someone done this sooner'?

Windows 10 is reportedly going to be offered for purchase on a USB flash drive, addressing the need for people who no longer have a DVD player in their computer, yet don't want to download the huge installation files online. Nothing groundbreaking here, just another way that Microsoft seems to be thinking about the end user with their upcoming launch of Windows 10. Then again, this could just be a rumor, but it is actually a good idea since not everyone has gigabit internet for unlimited bandwidth! Yahoo Tech has more details.

According to information allegedly obtained by German news site WinFuture, some retail versions of Windows 10 will be sold on preloaded USB flash drives.

A Microsoft spokesperson declined to confirm or deny the news, citing the company’s policy to not comment on rumors or speculation.  

JETPACK!

If you've been waiting and saving up your money for you very own jetpack, that wait is almost over as the first commercially available jetpack will be available for purchase next year. How much does it cost? Doesn't really matter because its a jetpack. Ok, maybe the price tag does matter a little, and the price tag on the Martin jetpack will be around $150,000, which is actually a pretty good deal when you consider that it's a JETPACK!!!!

The Guardian has more details on what $150k gets you. 

The Martin Jetpack is made from carbon fibre and aluminium. It eschews the traditional rockets of science-fiction jetpacks, which are powerful but difficult to control, and instead uses fans.

A two-litre petrol engine drives two fans either side of the pilot to lift the jet pack and up to 120kgs of human into the air, along with a low-altitude parachute for use should things go wrong.

After initial test flights in 2011, an updated version was shown off recently at the Paris airshow. It could fly for up to 30 minutes at speeds as fast as 74 kilometres per hour. Pilots will be able to reach altitudes of 1,000m taking off and landing vertically, meaning rooftops, gardens and parking lots are all viable launchpads.

SSDs aren't taking over the world

SSDs are cheaper and bigger than ever before, however, it appears that they still have a ways to go before they surpass spinning hard drives. While the prices have dropped and the capcities increased for SSDs, the same is true for spinning hard drives and that has been a major factor in mass adoption of SSD drives. Right now SSD prices have dropped down to $0.40 per GB range, but spinning drives have dropped to below $0.10 per GB. SSDs are expected to keep dropping in price, but so are spinning drives. In the end I'd say this only benefits the consumers, lower prices are never a bad thing. NetworkWorld has the full story over here.

In spite of a recent report to the contrary, solid-state drives (SSDs) will not surpass hard disk drives (HDDs) in either price or capacity any time soon, according to industry analysts.

In fact, hard drives will remain the dominant mass storage device in laptops and desktops for years to come.

For example, a data center-class HDD with 6TB of capacity sells for $185 today and will drop to about $165 by the end of the year -- about .03 cents per gigabyte, according to market research firm Gartner. A 4TB HDD for a laptop sells for $95 to computer manufacturers or about .02 cents per gigabyte.

1 Billion Windows 10 PCs by 2017

Microsoft has set the expectations high for Windows 10, really high if we are wanting to get technical. Microsoft has set the goal of having 1 Billion Windows 10 PCs in the market by the end of 2017 and while that seems crazy, according to a new study it really isn't all that crazy at all. Windows 10 has been a topic of discussion every couple weeks on our weekly podcast WeeklyTechUpdate and from what we've seen I think I'd give Windows 10 a much better shot at domination than previous versions. CNN Money takes a look at Windows 10 and Microsoft's plans to take over the world.

It sounds insane. But a study of IT professionals released Wednesday suggests that Microsoft should be able to hit that target with ease.

Spiceworks, an online network of millions of IT professionals, found that nearly three-quarters of businesses plan on installing Windows 10 within two years of the software's July 29, 2015, release.

Already 60% of IT departments have tested the new Microsoft operating system, and 40% plan to start rolling out Windows 10 this year.

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