We have just posted up Episode #286 of Weekly Tech Update. In this episode we are discussing Chromebook shipments stay strong, Apple’s iPad Air 2 destroys the competition and 12 defining moments in Keyboard history. We have those stories and more and the links below!
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WTU Episode #286 - All Hail the iPad Air 2 King!
Android App Pick - Star Wars: Commander
We have just posted up another Android App Pick of the Week and this week we are using the Force as we become a Star Wars Commander. That's right, Star Wars: Commander is an RTS-style game that lets you choose your allegiance and then you can battle your way through a campaign or even play online against the hordes of the rebel scum. Get ready to use your blaster and may the Force be with you! Try it. You'll like it.
Alienware Graphics Card Dock
If you buy an Alienware 13 laptop, you will soon have the option to purchase a $300 graphics card dock that takes almost any desktop graphics card and uses it to play games. This has been done before with limited success and being that Alienware only has one model that will work with this proprietary cable at the moment (more coming soon), I don't suspect this will fly either. If they made this $300 box work with other machines; such as MSI, Razer and ASUS, they'd sell a ton of them.
Sounds kinda rad, right? Right. Well, except for one teeny detail: This requires a proprietary, PCI-Express-based cable, one that only works on the new Alienware 13. According to a Dell spokesperson, future models will use the same connection port, but for now, even if you have an older Alienware machine you're outta luck. Of course, too, if you own a notebook from another brand, like Razer or ASUS, this will be of absolutely no use to you. Which makes sense: Dell wants to give people an incentive to buy Alienware laptops.
CoD Pre-Orders Down Year-Over-Year
The Call of Duty franchise has long been iconic when it comes to video games but those days seem to be over. After 12 or more refreshes, it seems that pre-orders are sliding year-after-year. While the game series will not be going away anytime soon, it just goes to show that when you refuse to listen to gamers, and you continue to charge full-price for a map-pack (aka new version), people get tired of it. I don't even feel a little sorry for Activision and everyone else involved. It's about time people started thinking outside the box again when it comes to video game titles.
Pre-order sales analysis by Cowen and Company released today suggests that the sales decline for the Call of Duty series will continue this year, with the forthcoming Advanced Warfare expected to sell 40 per cent less than last year's Ghosts and 70 per cent less than Black Ops 2 from 2012.
255 Tbps Down One Single Fiber
In the race for faster transfers out of a data-center, fiber has become completely mainstream and while individual fiber seems impressive, the reality is that the internet needs zetabytes of data throughput. In order to accomplish this, many strands of fiber are bundled together. The good news is that each strand of fiber is a bit faster now as China, US and the Netherlands have now claimed to reach 255Tbps over a single fiber. In four stands of fiber, you will see over a Petabit per second transfer. Holy smoking fiber Batman!
Those multiple cores within the fibre provide seven spatial paths, without needing seven individual fibres (the downside being that to implement the multicore technologies that are now driving speed records means pulling new cables). However, as Dr Chigo Okonkwo, an assistant professor at Eindhoven explains, the 200 micron diameter of the multicore fibre means they're close to conventional fibres now deployed.
OneDrive Goes Unlimited (for Office 365)
The battle for your online data continues to rage on and Microsoft has recently upped their game by offering absolutely unlimited storage in your OneDrive - if you are a subscriber to Office 365. While this sounds amazing, the reality is that most people never even got close to their initial 7GB of space as documents don't take up that much space. However, as you plug this into your PC and use it for online backup, you will use more - but it will take a pretty impressive pipe to make it useful.
While unlimited storage is another important milestone for OneDrive we believe the true value of cloud storage is only realized when it is tightly integrated with the tools people use to communicate, create, and collaborate, both personally and professionally. That is why unlimited storage is just one small part of our broader promise to deliver a single experience across work and life that helps people store, sync, share, and collaborate on all the files that are important to them, all while meeting the security and compliance needs of even the most stringent organizations.
StratEx Jump from 135,000 feet
Felix Baumgartner is no longer the record holder for the worlds highest jump. That title now goes to Alan Eustace. He's a Google VP that did this project on his own and has been working on it since 2011. This is pretty amazing and he didn't even use a capsule. Go Alan!
9 Biggest Mess Ups in Tech History
It really is tough to create a new product - or a new product category when it comes to technology. There have been some amazing improvements and advancements over the past few years, but there has also been a fair share of things that didn't work out as well in the real world as they did in the boardroom brainstorming session. Take a look at nine of the biggest mess ups at the link below.
Google does a lot right. Snatching up Android? Pretty solid. Developing amazing software and smartphone tools? Not too bad. Oh, and that search engine isn't too bad either. But even the biggest companies can't escape the occasional tech blunder, and Nexus Q was exactly that. Announced in 2012, Google handed out this $300 digital media player known as Nexus Q to everyone attending the 2012 Google I/O conference.
12 Moments in Keyboard History
The mighty keyboard has been with us for many years and there have been a few radical ideas that have been received with very little enthusiasm. There are probably more than 12 (non)defining moments in keyboard history, but here are a dozen highlights to get you going.
At some point in the day, we all smash our fingers against some form of keyboard -- whether it's of the physical or virtual variety. In this week's Rewind, we take a look at how the keyboard's grown beyond its humble typewriter beginnings and taken on a life of its own.
Chromebook Shipments Up 67%
It appears that the low-cost Windows laptop hasn't really dipped into Chromebook sales. While many people approach the Chromebook like the new netbook, they really do offer more - if you're into the Google ecosystem. Even though some of these new Chromebooks are a bit more expensive, the overall sales are up 67% and growing. Way to go alternative OS!
Specifically, ABI found that Acer is continuing to maintain its lead over other vendors in the market, including Samsung, HP, and Dell. By ABI's count, the top three leading vendors, Acer, Samsung, and HP, accounted for 74 percent of all Chromebooks shipped during the first half of 2014. ABI doesn't see the top three changing in the waning months of 2014.