A new scanner developed by Kaminsky and friends can help find Conficker-infected machines. We're so drenched in Conficker news at this point that I think the Girl Scouts have started selling Confickerdoodles. We also analyze Netflix's Blu-ray-rate hike, and try to decide why they're fighting over toilets in space.Listen now: Download today's podcast EPISODE 942
Netflix to hike up monthly Blu-ray fee by up to $8 a month http://news.cnet.com/8301-17939_109-10207302-2.html
New method for detecting Conficker discovered, debuted http://arstechnica.com/security/news/2009/03/new-method-for-detecting-conficker-discovered-debuted.ars
YouTube gets Disney http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123844481702470815.html… Read more
We've barely unpacked our bags from GSMA Mobile World Congress in Barcelona in February, and we're on the road again to Las Vegas for CTIA Wireless, the U.S. trade show and conference held every spring where the biggest and most influential players in the U.S. mobile market gather.
While there will be some cell phones announced at this year's show, most of the excitement will center on software applications and the virtual storefronts that are popping up to distribute these new applications. Since the success of Apple's App Store, which provides easy access to third-party applications for iPhones, other companies have jumped on the bandwagon announcing their own application stores.
Everyone from Google to Microsoft to Nokia to Research In Motion has announced plans for a new application store. And at this year's CTIA, some of these new app stores will come to life. RIM is expected to announce that its BlackBerry AppWorld is open for business, and Microsoft will start showing off its Marketplace for the first time.
But application markets aren't the only thing that will be talked about. Carriers like Verizon and Clearwire will also be touting faster broadband wireless networks that will help make these applications a reality. And of course handset makers will be showing off new products, some of which have already been announced, such as the Palm Pre.
But this year's spring CTIA Wireless show will likely be smaller than in years past. The economic downturn has taken its toll on the mobile market. Even Nokia, the world's largest and strongest maker of cell phones, has slashed expectations for 2009. And the company has already begun laying off employees and closing facilities to cut costs.… Read more
The folks at Smule, Pandora, Nokia, and BlueRun Ventures may not agree on everything, but during a Thursday night panel discussion on the business of mobile applications, their attention centered on a single device time and time again: the iPhone.
From the ease of the iPhone's paint-by-numbers SDK to its extremely accessible on-phone App Store and unified hardware and software package, the conversation on all sides of the table both challenged and defended claims of the iPhone's hegemony.
The iTunes App Store has been around for eight months and now lists more than 25,000 apps. If you're like me, you've probably purchased a dozen or more of these apps and hopefully, you're backing up your computer regularly to protect your purchases.
But backups only work if you know how to use them to restore lost data. Frequently, the iPhone and iPod Touch require complicated restores and multiple layers of backup; this how-to will show you how to conquer the restore beast.
Step 1: Reinstall your apps in iTunes
A friend recently experienced a power … Read more
Updated at 4:00 p.m. with comment from Apple.
While Apple's App Store policies have indeed been the source of frustration for many an iPhone developer, the overblown concerns over refund charges on Thursday do not rise to that level.
Contrary to earlier reports at TechCrunch and other outlets, Apple's policies regarding iPhone application refunds, and the portion of the refund that developers are expected to cover, are not new. (CNET took note of the issue as well.) They also do not faze most developers accustomed to the reality of operating an online retail business.
The hubbub arose after TechCrunch noticed a section of the iPhone 3.0 SDK agreement that contains this clause, thought to be a new development:In the event that Apple receives any notice or claim from any end-user that: (i) the end-user wishes to cancel its license to any of the Licensed Applications within ninety (90) days of the date of download of that Licensed Application by that end-user; or (ii) a Licensed Application fails to conform to Your specifications or Your product warranty or the requirements of any applicable law, Apple may refund to the end-user the full amount of the price paid by the end-user for that Licensed Application.
In the event that Apple refunds any such price to an end-user, You shall reimburse, or grant Apple a credit for, an amount equal to the price for that Licensed Application. Apple will have the right to retain its commission on the sale of that Licensed Application, notwithstanding the refund of the price to the end.
But upon further examination, several developers confirmed that this clause has been in the iPhone developer agreement since Day 1, and they seemed bemused at the lack of understanding regarding the world of online commerce and the iTunes Store.
First of all, returning a purchased application to the App Store is not a simple thing, and there is no provision for a 90-day refund stated in the terms of service for the App Store. The section in the App Store Terms and Conditions that pertains to refunds states:On occasion, technical problems may delay or prevent delivery of your Product. Your exclusive and sole remedy with respect to Product that is not delivered within a reasonable period will be either replacement of such Product, or refund of the price paid for such Product, as determined by Apple. Otherwise, no refunds are available (emphasis added).
The section in the SDK agreement that mentions 90-day refunds seem to apply only if a purchaser brings a "notice or claim" against Apple in the process of trying to return the application. That's a legal term, not a request for a refund because you thought the fart application, for example, delivered six sounds when it has only five.… Read more
Research In Motion's new mobile application store is set to launch on April 1 at the CTIA Wireless trade show in Las Vegas, BusinessWeek reported this week.
Mike Lazaridis, co-CEO of RIM, which makes the popular BlackBerry devices, is slated to give a keynote address on the opening day of the trade show and conference. And the company is expected to announce the new application store there.
The BlackBerry application store, which will be called BlackBerry App World, was announced in October 2008. And it is one of several application stores that have been announced to take on Apple's App Store for the iPhone. … Read more
Speaking before an audience in Tokyo Tuesday, Chief Executive Michael Dell dropped a few hints that his company might be looking to release a smartphone.
"For the last three years, we have integrated 3G radios into our notebooks," said Dell. "We already have agreements with many mobile carriers around Netbook devices, so it wouldn't be unreasonable to expect that we would have smaller mobile Internet devices or smartphones in the future."
I don't think Dell can simply start selling small computers, call them smartphones, and expect to be successful. As a company that missed quite a few trends in the market and one of the last to stop selling Pocket PCs, Dell has to carefully prepare for some of the issues that await it if it does release a smartphone.… Read more
Google has added a basic drawing ability to Google Docs, letting people add graphical elements such as org charts or diagrams to their online word-processing documents, spreadsheets, and presentations.
You shouldn't expect to be able to crowdsource your online document into something fit for the Guggenheim, but the feature does offer several useful illustration tools that can be used within Google Docs' multi-author collaborative framework.
Among them: a variety of shapes, arrows, and lines, a free-form curve tool, and text boxes. You can change border and fill colors, add text to various shapes, and rotate and resize them. You … Read more
A clause in the Apple/developer agreement for the App Store, if enforced, could put a financial pinch on developers.
As any App Store developer knows, Apple gets a 30 percent take of every sale made from its store--if an application sells for $10, the developer gets $7 and Apple gets $3. While some argue it's a hefty share for basically being a distributor, the fee includes advertising and access to Apple's loyal user base, as well as an easy way for potential customers to find the developer.