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App Pick - Financial Calculators

Real Railgun of the U.S. Navy

I don't get any sound with this video myself, but what it showcases is the Navy's Railgun that fires projectiles at 6x the speed of sound... They do make a bit of a mess when they hit.

 

Google Responds to Leaving Users Unsecure

Last week Google took a lot of flack for not updating their WebKit package in Android 4.4 devices and in a sense leaving millions of users vulnerable. This is not good news if you're sitting on anything other than Android 5.0.x and Google took some time to respond as to why they made this choice. As part of the AOSP (Android Open Source Project), this WebKit is over 5 Million lines of code and different developers are adding tons of content and lines of code to it all the time. Google simply can't update something that has been twisted, contorted and changed by other developers. If you want to be secure, get Lollipop.

But WebKit alone is over 5 million lines of code and hundreds of developers are adding thousands of new commits every month, so in some instances applying vulnerability patches to a 2+ year old branch of WebKit required changes to significant portions of the code and was no longer practical to do safely. With the advances in Android 4.4, the number of users that are potentially affected by legacy WebKit security issues is shrinking every day as more and more people upgrade or get new devices.

Source: Adrian Ludwig (Google+)

Upgrade to Windows 10 from Windows 8 or Windows 7

Microsoft announced last week that Windows 10 would be free for Windows 8 users and also Windows 7 users. They also announced that you'll be able to upgrade on-the-fly through Windows Update. Finally Microsoft is getting how users want to operate. While a fresh install will likely be best, the ability to do an upgrade will make it much easier for many users to perform and with it enabled through Windows Update, they will get a larger adoption of their new OS than they would if you had to make an effort to do the upgrade.

For those of you on Windows 7 or 8.1, that have so far stayed away from the technical previews of the new OS, there’s a new way which allows you to upgrade your devices: Windows Update. The process is simple and the system will install a whole new version of Windows as if it were like a regular update.

Source: Neowin

8-Bit Guardians of the Galaxy

If you've seen Guardians of the Galaxy, you'll totally get this 8-bit version. If you haven't seen it yet and want to see the entire movie summed up in 3:22 - this is the video to watch.

 

Windows 10 Announcements

Microsoft has of course been teasing Windows 10 for a while now, but this week was their Windows 10 launch event where they were showing off Windows 10 and why you should upgrade to it. The Verge takes a look at 9 of the biggest announcements they made and most of them are what people have been asking for ever since Windows 8 came out....

We got our first look at a bunch of features in Windows 10, which comes out next week for people who signed up for the pre-release. As expected, Microsoft made a strong push toward connecting its devices more seamlessly, part of its universal apps program. Office, Outlook, and other apps all work quite similarly across devices, and Cortana is everywhere, working as a natural-language interface and personal assistant. The big surprise, however, was Microsoft’s foray into virtual reality, with its HoloLens glasses, an ambitious bid to create a system for overlaying holographic images over the real world.

Google Wireless

This is the last Google Wireless story I will post this week, I promise...

CNN has a few more details on what the Google Wireless deal might look like as it has been reported this week that Google is working with T-Mobile and Sprint to break into the carrier business which will undoubtedly make the big guys a little nervous and probably a bit angry. It appears like Google's service could be a VOIP/Data deal which could make it a cheap alternative to other carriers but there are still a lot of details that remain unknown. Check out the full story over here at CNN.

Google will start selling cell phone service along with its Android phones, according to multiple news reports. This has been a long time coming.

For years, Google has been assembling just about all the pieces it needs to become a mobile provider.

The search giant already makes the most-used mobile software on the planet, it designs and sells phones online, and it has become an Internet service provider with its Google Fiber initiative. It even has its own VoIP phone service called Google Voice, which allows people to get a Google phone number and call people through Gmail or Hangouts over Wi-Fi.

Cable companies think you're lazy

The whole cable companies vs. streaming media companies debate has been going on for a few years now as consumers have been presented more and more options to get their entertainment fix. Cable companies have felt a bit of hurt with people "cutting the cord", but cable companies are still around and it could be partially due to the fact that a lot of people are just too lazy to "cut the cord" and get their media elsewhere. Vice.com has a very interesting look at the cable company vs streaming debate and has some good thoughts on what's going and what we might be see in the future.

So called "cord-cutters" still make up only a single-digit percentage of the overall population,  ​according to research firm EMarketer. But their numbers are growing, and, increasingly, millennials aren't cutting the cord—they're just never getting it in the first place.

"There's a lot of denial in the industry, especially coming from the providers," Tim Hanlon, founder of Vertere Group, a consulting firm contracted by networks and media companies to help them make decisions about their futures, told me.

2014 was a good year for iTunes

iTunes is obviously a pretty successful venture for Apple and in 2014 was successful enough that Apple paid their developers 10 billion dollars. For those of you keeping track at home, 10 billion is more than Hollywood earned from the box office in 2014. Asymco has all the details, charts, and graphs over here.

Apple paid $10 billion to developers in calendar 2014. Additional statistics for the App store are:

  • $500 million spent on iOS apps in first week of January 2015

  • Billings for apps increased 50% in 2014

  • Cumulative developer revenues were $25 billion (making 2014 revenues 40% of all app sales since store opened in 2008)

  • 627,000 jobs created in the US

  • 1.4 million iOS apps catalog is sold in 155 countries

Putting these data points together with others from previous releases results in a fairly clear picture of the iTunes/Software/Services

 

Why Windows 10 is actually impressive

The guys over at Gizmodo have a new article up that shows you with pictures why Windows 10 is actually impressive and why you will probably want it (especially if you have a tablet). I think Microsoft has been working a bit of overtime and might have actually listened to users this time around.

Here is a tablet. A Surface Pro 3, to be exact. I've never really wanted a Surface Pro 3, but Windows 10 is making me reconsider. Let me show you why.

 

Google to enter the cell phone market?

The rumor that Google is wanting to enter the cell phone market is on that has been floating around for quite some time, yet once again the rumor has surfaced which gets a person thinking that there might just be something behind it. AndroidPolice has the rumor again saying that Google is getting ready to work a deal with Sprint and T-Mobile to become a "virtual mobile operator" and launch their own service which is being called "Nova". The prospect of Google being in the cell phone carrier game is an interesting idea and with deep pockets like Google it could really shake things up.

Reports indicate that Google has taken definitive steps towards launching their own cellular phone service, making a long-whispered rumor sound like more than just hearsay. Google is working on deals with both Sprint and T-Mobile to become a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) on their infrastructure. While details are sparse for now, this might be your surest bet to avoid bloatware if there ever was one.

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