Monday, 6 June 2011

Apples iCloud Services, A Central File Depot For Your Media!

Steve Jobs took a break from his medical leave today in order to reveal the details on Apple’s new iCloud service. The iCloud is Apples solution for connecting all your devices to a central repository for all your media files. This concept allows you to “store your content in iCloud and automatically and wirelessly push it to all your devices. When anything changes on one of your devices, all of your devices are wirelessly updated almost instantly." Apple also claims that the free suite of iCloud services will work seamlessly with your iPhone, iPod, iPad, Mac or PC. You will get 5GB of space for Mail, Document Storage and Backup. Purchased music, apps, books and Photo Stream don't count as part of the 5GB limit.

The expected part of this service was the ability to have all your purchased music in iTunes available across all your devices and computers for no additional cost, new music purchases are pushed to all devices at the same time. "It shows the history of all the songs you've bought on any device. I can download any song to any device by pushing that little cloud button," said Jobs.
But what if you ripped your music from CD’s or downloaded them from a torrent? The iTunes match service will search through your music library and replace songs with a 256 kbps AAC DRM-free version if it can match the song to one of the 18 millon songs available on iTunes store. If not then no harm. This service will cost $24.99 and a free beta version is available now.

The unexpected element from today’s announcement was the ability to not only put your music in the cloud but any content you want to share among your devices.

“"iCloud Storage seamlessly stores all documents created using iCloud Storage APIs, and automatically pushes them to all your devices. When you change a document on any device, iCloud automatically pushes the changes to all your devices. Apple's Pages, Numbers and Keynote apps already take advantage of iCloud Storage. Users get up to 5GB of free storage for their mail, documents and backup—which is more amazing since the storage for music, apps and books purchased from Apple, and the storage required by Photo Stream doesn't count towards this 5GB total.”

The photo specific version of this known as ‘Photo Stream’ automatically uploads photos to the cloud and pushed them to all your devices and computers.

In the fall when iCloud ships there will be a pricing structure released for users that wish to purchase additional space in the cloud

One final service in the iCloud workd was the backup service allowing you to securely backup you iOS devices to the cloud over Wi-Fi when you recharge your device.

"We've added wireless backup to the cloud. Once daily, we're gonna back up a lot of your important content to the cloud. If you ever get a new phone, everything will be loaded onto that phone automatically," said Jobs

EA Releases Battlefield 3 Details For E3

While EA has been busy tweaking Battlefield 3 for its upcoming release they decided to show off a bit at E3. The announced on their blog “we will be showing both single player and multilayer game play at E3! You can expect new trailers and screen shots as well as in-depth press previews hitting next wee” There will be a playable map for press available at the show named “Operation M├ętro,” Some of the features of BF3 are to “temporarily disable vehicles, go prone, mount weapons, lay down suppressive fire and more.”
They aren’t laying it all out at the show though, they are saving the co-op campaign, Team Death Match, and the Battlefield web destination, featuring “powerful social tools, feeds and detailed player stats. Battlelog also lets you manage your friends lists, squad up, create platoons, use voice chat and follow your friends’ progress in real-time, and more 

All at zero dollars / month (take that MW3), thank you EA / Dice!!!

The Blog post from EA can be found HERE

Fukushima radiation causes rabbit deformity

It didn't take long...we are now seeing the negative effects of nuclear radiation on life just outside of the radiation exclusion zone. The victim is a helpless rabbit that has unfortunately mutated and developped without a set of bunny ears. Many are now wondering if the exclusion zone radius, currently set at 20km (12 miles) is sufficient...obviously it is not!

Halo 4 Announcement Leaked

Microsoft has stolen some of the attention this morning from the expected Wii 2 announcement with news of Halo 4 being in development. From what was gathered we can also expect a demo of the new game later this week! The leak was courtesy of and while speculated on for some time this news will certainly generate some excitement among the Millions of Halo faithful

See below a leaked screen shot of the site before it was removed:

Transplanted HIV Immunity Results In A Cure Of Sorts For One Man

Timothy Ray Brown pegged the has been essentially cured of the HIV disease, and if that were not remarkable enough it was by accident. Suffering from both Leukemia and HIV Brown received a bone marrow stem cell transplant in 2007. The transplant came from a man who was already immune to the disease which approximately 1% of Caucasians are. Remarkably once receiving the transplant the doctors monitoring Brown noticed his HIV went away.  "He has no replicating virus and he isn't taking any medication. And he will now probably never have any problems with HIV," says his doctor Gero Heutter told Reuters.

The HIV epidemic which has killed an estimated 30 Million people in the 30 years since it was discovered and continues to spread at a rate of 7000 people a day (according to the UN).  This disease destroys countless lives and we rarely hear any good news.

Despite the good news expectations should be tempered. Bone marrow transplants can be fatal and there is no way that this treatment could be applied to the estimated 33 million carriers of HIV today. 

CBS has an interview video with Timothy Ray Brown  HERE

Microsoft To Launch Xbox Diamond TV Service At E3

The rumor mill is in full swing now with the E3 expo hours away from start. The most recent buzz involves Microsoft releasing an IPTV service called Xbox Live Diamond later today. This new service would turn Microsoft into a cable alternative for anyone who owns an Xbox and an Internet connection. The service may also work with cable companies as a device to authenticate existing cable subscribers when watching TV shows or sporting events similar to a service Microsoft offers in the UK with it’s partner Sky. Over there users can use their Xbox avatars at sporting events to interact with other fans.
The service is expected to launch as an additional fee on top of the existing Xbox Live Gold’s $59.99 Subscription probably in the form of a monthly subscription.

Stay tuned throughout the day as there are bound to be many announcements.

Sunday, 5 June 2011

Canadian Scientists Capture Antimatter For An Extended Time

The stuff of science fiction is one step closer after the paper released Sunday evening in the journal of Nature Physics. Lead author Makato Fujiwara claims to have successfully stored antimatter atoms for more than 16 minutes. This is a monumental feat as previously this rare substance has only been able to be captured and studied for only fractions of a second “It’s a kind of game-changer,” said Fujiwara.

The reason this substance is so rare is that once Antimatter comes into contact with matter they annihilate each other, releasing a large amount of energy.  So here’s the rub, how do you capture something that annihilates itself and whatever you would design to hold it? They created a cylindrical container, created a vacuum and used magnets to keep the antimatter from touching the walls thus suspending it. 

 This discovery now opens up the door to new studies on the elusive substance such as whether gravity attracts or repels antimatter, or in laymen’s terms does it fall up or down? While we are still light years away from using antimatter as a fuel source, we are one step closer to making it a reality.

E3 Starts This Monday, Here Is Why You Need To Pay Attention

The Electronic Entertainment Expo, or E3 to its friends will kick off the 2011 show in LA. Each year this event ushers in numerous gaming related announcements that you will not want to miss. Although we are not able to attend this year’s show we will be keeping you up to date with all the events and all the major announcements.

 There are several expected announcements at this year including specifics on Sony’s new PSP replacement dubbed NGP. Nintendo may release some details regarding the Wii2 Console (rumors persist about a camera embedded in the Wiimote and a truly impressive graphics engine) . Details on some major games such as the “3s” IE Battlefield 3, Modern Warfare 3, and Mass Effect 3 are also expected. There is often an announcement out of the blue, so stay tuned for an exciting week ahead.

Saturday, 4 June 2011

The Daily Show Takes The Weekend Off, But Still Sets Twitter On fire

In case you have not heard yet #AccordingToPalin is the hottest (and funniest) hash tag going right now.  It all started when Palin stopped in Boston as a part of her cross country get to know the folks tour. She was interviewed by local media and when asked about her day started  explaining the significance of Paul Revere in American History. Suffice to say she missed the mark a bit to hilarious results (video below).
Since then though the Daily Show writers have begun tweeting their own historical facts as Palin may interpret them, thus creating #AccordingToPalin


** Update **
According to THIS ARTICLE "Sarah Palin defended her historical account of Paul Revere’s famous midnight ride of 1775 on Sunday, telling an interviewer “I know my American history.”"
Doesn't she have someone to stop this train wreck?

Friday, 3 June 2011

Playstation 3 and PSP Owners , Claim your FREE Games Now

  On May 16th Sony revealed what they planned to offer Playstation 3 and PSP owners as compensation for the Playstation Network disruption. Known as the ‘Welcome Back’ package it includes a list of games, services and trials. However since this announcement was made it has thus far been impossible to claim after continued service disruption with the Playstation store and the Playstation Network in general.
As of Today the Playstation Store is now live in North America and Europe! Those living in Japan, South Korea and Hong Kong must wait a little longer due to increased security scrutiny. Please note you have one full month (till July 3rd) to claim your free loot.

The Full Q&A is as follows:
Q: What’s in the Welcome Back Program?
A: To start, all PSN members who had signed up before the outage (April 20, 2011) will be able to select two games for the PS3 and two games for the PSP systems.

For PS3 owners, go to the ‘Welcome Back’ section in the PlayStation Store, and select 2 titles from the following list:

Dead Nation
Super Stardust HD
Wipeout HD + Fury

For PSP owners, go to the ‘Welcome Back’ section of PlayStation Store on your PSP system and select 2 titles from the following list:

LittleBigPlanet (PSP)
ModNation Racers
Pursuit Force
Killzone Liberation

Select your first game from “Game 1”, then return to the Welcome Back page and go to “Game 2” to select your second game out of the remaining choices available. This goes for both PS3 and PSP.

In addition, we’re giving access to our premium subscription service, PlayStation Plus, which includes games, huge discounts, exciting exclusives and added features like online storage and automatic downloads, to all PSN members for 30 days at no charge, requiring no long term commitment. As with the games above, go to the PlayStation Store and under the ‘Welcome Back’ section, select ‘PlayStation Plus: 30 Days Free’, and you’ll be given access to all of the benefits of PlayStation Plus. Note that this will not auto-renew and simply expires 30 days after activation.

Current Plus subscribers receive an extra 60 days added to their existing subscription at no charge. For current Plus subscribers, no action is needed as the 60 days are automatically added to your subscription.

PlayStation Network users will also get 100 virtual items in PlayStation Home as a show of appreciation for your patience while Home was inaccessible. Additional content is coming soon, including the next addition to the Home Mansion personal space, and Ooblag’s Alien Casino, an exclusive game.

A selection of “On Us” movie rentals are currently available to PlayStation Network customers this weekend only, where Video Service is available.

Finally, current Music Unlimited Premium subscription members will receive an additional 30 days of premium subscription plus days lost due to the outage.

Q: When will I have access to the Welcome Back Program?
A: The content offered as part of the Welcome Back Program is available for download today and will be available through July 3.

Q: I have both PS3 and PSP. Does this mean I will get 4 games all together?
A: Yes, as long as you were a PSN member before April 20, 2011, you’ll be able to receive up to 4 games based on the titles listed above; 2 on each platform.

Q: Are there any limitations to the PS3 and PSP games we are receiving as part of the Welcome Back Program?
A: None. These games are yours to keep.

Q: How long do I have to get into the PlayStation Store and receive my content for Welcome Back?
A: Access to the Welcome Back content will be expiring on July 3. Once this date has passed, the Welcome Back section in the PlayStation Store will be removed.

Q: When does the 30 days of my PlayStation Plus access expire?
A: Your PlayStation Plus 30-day access will expire 30 days from the date you activated it in PlayStation Store.

Q: When will (insert game here) be published?
A: Look forward to posts over the coming days that will show what content will be available at that point, or coming soon. We’re planning frequent store publishes offering lots of new content for everyone to enjoy.

Q: I’m getting 30 days of access to PlayStation Plus; can you refresh my memory on what I get with this service?
A: From the time you activate your 30 days of PlayStation Plus, you’ll be able to download games and game related content, purchase select store items at a discount, and have access to the exclusive features of Plus. You’ll also be able to get early access to any Plus exclusive Demos and priority Beta invitations that might be scheduled during your 30 days.

Q: Do I get to keep the games in PlayStation Plus forever?
A: Content that is free in PlayStation Plus will not be available after your PlayStation Plus time has expired. However, if you decide to join PlayStation Plus, you’ll have access to all of the content you downloaded during your 30 day access for as long as you are a subscriber.

Q: Do I get to keep any games or content I purchased with the PlayStation Plus discount?
A: Yes. Any content you purchase at a discount is yours to keep, regardless of your subscription status.

Q: Aside from the games and discounts; does PlayStation Plus offer anything else?
A: Yes! PlayStation Plus includes the Online Storage for Game Saves feature, allowing you to backup treasured game saves or access them from another PS3. In addition, you get the Automatic Download feature, which automatically updates your 10 most recently played games while the system is in stand-by mode so you don’t have to wait for updates before playing your games.

Q: What content will be in PlayStation Plus when I activate my 30 days?
A: PlayStation Plus content and discounts are regularly updated throughout the month. For up-to-date information on content within PlayStation Plus, please visit the Plus homepage.

Q: Where can I find the Welcome Back content in Home?
A: The 100 virtual items can be found in the kiosk in Home’s Central Plaza along with two personal spaces – Dragon’s Lair and the Mansion Garage. A new game – Ooblag’s Alien Casino – will be released soon (June 2011). This game will be 100% free-to-play. As an added bonus, players that access the Ooblag Alien Casino space will be rewarded an active item version of the Ooblag game that can be played in your personal space(s).

Apple iCloud Music Streaming Site Will Launch As Free Service

As we reported earlier this week the new music streaming service from Apple called will be called iCloud. We find out today that this service will be free on launch so claims the LA Times. After an introductory time the service will then charge a mere $25 a year.  Although it is still not clear what you may get for this $25 subscription it has been reported that Apple has signed agreements with all four major record labels.

Bono of U2 Found Hitchhiking by Edmonton Oilers Star

Gilbert Brule and his girlfriend Kelsey Nichols were driving along Marine drive near where they live  in North Vancouver when by their own account they picked up “one of the biggest rock stars in the world”.

Bono and his assistance went out for a walk when it started to rain. Brule spotted the pair but it was Nichols who was driving and at first refused to stop. "I said no, we're not picking up a hitchhiker. We're going to die” followed by "There's no way." Not long after though Brule convinced her to change her mind and she turned their truck around.  "He was very cool," Bono said of Brule, "He said, 'Where do you want to go?' And I said, 'Just take me to where The Edge is’” The Edge wasn’t far located in nearby Horse Shoe Bay.

For his kind gesture Bono invited Brule and Nichols to their show in Edmonton on Wednesday with back stage VIP treatment. Brule jumped at the chance and ditched his tickets to the first game of the Stanely Cup finals. During the Wed night show Bono said that he had decided "that I now want to be Gilbert Brule,"  and proceeded  to cast each of the 3 remaining band members as historic Oilers Legends Wayne Gretzky,Mark Messier and Grant Fuhr.  When asked about the honor Brule gushed "That was insane -- I think I want to be him."

A Comedic Interlude From BBC Comedy Channel

The new girlfriend is smart, funny and beautiful. She's perfect, except for one little thing...


Our Inaugural WTF Story: Police and Fire Crews Watch Man Drown

A suicidal man was seen entering the San Francisco Bay on Monday looking back periodically at the crowd that had formed to watch. He continued to wade in till the water was up to his neck and waited.  "The next thing he was floating face down" commented an onlooker "We expected to see at some point that there would be a concern for him".

The man was Fifty year old Raymond Zack who spent almost an hour in the water before drowning in front of an estimated crowd of 75 on lookers including Fire and Police personnel. His Stepmother who rushed to the scene fearing for his safety said she cannot  understand why no one attempted to save her stepson. "They were there two hours," Dolores Berry, 84, said about the emergency personnel. "Two long hours. There were kids playing and police and firefighters standing around. Nobody did a thing."

The first time I heard about this story I was sure it must have been some urban legend, something I would go to Snopes and find out had suckered in people for years. Surely there is no way a  crown of onlookers would just stand and watch a man drown for that long. Unfortunately I was wrong.

There are many local media reports of the incident and when asked about the incident the Alemeda Fire Department cited that due to budget cuts in 2009 Fire crews lacked the training and gear to enter the water. A coast guard boat was dispatched but the water was too shallow for the boat to enter. "The incident yesterday was deeply regrettable," D'Orazi said Tuesday. "But I can also see it from our firefighters' perspective. They're standing there wanting to do something, but they are handcuffed by policy at that point." The Alameda Police department commented via Lt Sean Lynch "He was engaged in a deliberate act of taking his own life," Lynch told the Mercury News. "We did not know whether he was violent, whether drugs were involved. It's not a situation of a typical rescue."

There was no word as to the dangers the water in this area may entail but I think that if the man was in the water for such a considerable amount of time that something could have been done.
Some good has come of this tragic event though. In a City Council hearing Tuesday the city said it would spend up to $40,000 to certify 16 firefighters in land-based water rescues.

Thursday, 2 June 2011

William Shatner Receives Honorary Degree

Bones is no longer the only Doctor on the Enterprise after William Shatner today received his honorary doctorate of letters from his Alma Mater Mcgill University.

His acceptance speech was delivered in his distinctive style and produced many laughs from the audience of graduating arts students. He dispensed such advise as "Get up earlier in the morning! There's nothing you can't accomplish when standing on two feet. When you're lying down all you accomplish is some REM sleep, and working out your dream life." and"My talents didn't lie in the field of accounting. My father, who paid for my education, was not amused. "But my talents lay in trying to be funny and entertaining people. Although I didn't study that, per se — that's Latin, by the way — I got my education, complete, whole and useful, at McGill."

See the video here:

Want the opposite sex to find you sexually attractive? Guys, don't smile, and Ladies, do!

A new study released by the University of British Columbia investigated sexual attractiveness of the opposite genders. On a first impression, guys found smiling, happy women to be the most sexually attractive, and ranked proud, confident women as the least. For women, it was the complete opposite, as proud, moody men, ie. stereotypical bad boys, were found to be the most sexually attractive.

What I found particularly interesting, but not suprising, was that women gave lower ratings to men then vice versa. I would theorize that if an additional study was done correlating the amount of time a man spends grooming himself, versus a woman, the reason for lower rating would be evident. Typically, women spend a lot more time actually taking care of themselves, while guys tend to be less put together.

The synopsis of the study can be found HERE

Want to be more sexually attractive to a woman? You'll get +5 bonus points to sexual attractiveness for doing each of the following:
  • Bathing daily. Yes, we DO notice when you don't.
  • Style your hair, seriously, the rolled out of bed look only works if you're a surfer or asian dude who spend at least 30 minutes achieving the look.
  • Use moisturizer at least a few times a week. We don't like looking at your flaky, rough skin, much less feeling it!
  • Wear clothes that fit. +10 points to wearing a suit that's been custom tailored to fit you.
  • Don't wear stained, ripped clothing. Or smelly clothing, though you'd assume that would be obvious.
  • You don't have to get a manicure/pedicure, but at least clip and file your nails so they aren't jagged and gross.

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Windows 8 Preview: The Interface (it’s all in the touch)

Microsoft  demonstrated today the new Windows 8 operating system for the first time. This upcoming version of Windows is designed to work on all kinds of devices from small to large screens to devices with or without a keyboard and mouse.  The new additions to the Windows OS comes without sacrificing backwards compatibility as they demonstrated the interface with new software and existing Windows 7 programs working together. Another addition is that Windows 8 apps will be able to use HTML5 and an integrated Javascript to deliver new and thus far unique experiences.

See below a preview of Windows 8!

Motorola To Release Dick Tracy Watch Phone

The site Pocketnow grabbed some images from a Motorola mobility site before it was promptly taken down. The site shows images of a new Dick Tracy like watch phone as well as the Xoom 2 tablet, Slimline, Zaha, Targa, and Pearl handsets. Motorola then contacted Pocketnow and asked them to remove the images but not before every other site got a copy of the images for their site! The images do not reveal any specs but it is only a matter of time before they come out as well.

The question remains though was this actually a slip up by Motorola or a method to get the products some viral exposure? Share your thoughts below.

iPhones "may" cause cancer...

The World Health Organization's International Agency for Research on Cancer are claiming that iPhones may cause cancer. To be clear, a little knowledge is a dangerous thing and my statement that iPhones causes cancer is not the whole story. The truth, if we knew what the truth was, is a warning that any and all cell phones, Androids and Blackberry's included, "may" cause cancer...with "may" being the qualitative hook line and sinker.

Link to video here.

More to follow...