348 February 10, 2014 – Internet and Phone Anytime Anywhere – Really

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This week’s headline story: Internet and Phone Anytime Anywhere – really

iridium-go-main2While Internet access is pervasive in most cities and along highways via cell towers and wi-fi, there is still a significant amount of real-estate on the planet, experts say around 90 percent, where it is impossible to connect. Iradium communications hopes to resolve the issue with a new device it calls GO! GO! is a small but rugged box, the size of a deck of cards, that wirelessly connects to low-orbit satellites to support up to 5 devices over wi-fi anywhere on the planet. GO! is expected to sell for around $800 with a monthly service plan that may be as high as $100. While the price may be a little steep for consumers, it will be an indispensable technology for military and first responders. The company also expects the device to be popular with backpackers, transportation workers and other specialized hobbyists and industries.

Iridium GO! Hotspot Promises Wi-Fi Virtually Anywhere [NewsFactor]

and elsewhere in Tech News.

  • Dems Introduce Bills to Bring Back Net Neutrality [Ecommerce Times]

    You’ll recall that two weeks ago the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals struck down Federal Communications Commission rules that mandated ISPs treat all Internet data the same — that is, they were prohibited from blocking or throttling legitimate content that a paying customer was accessing over their network. This week Democrats in both Congress and the Senate moved to restore the Net neutrality rules of the FCC by introducing new legislation titled the Open Internet Preservation Act. The new legislation is not expected to garner much support from republicans.

  • Computer Coding Boot Camps Raise Concerns [NewsFactor]

    Computer Coding Bootcamps are sprouting up in SanFransicso faster than regulators can control. Several such bootcamps have been warned that they will be shut down and fined if they do not go through the proper educational institution licensing process.

  • FCC Doubles Money for School Broadband to $2 Billion [NewsFactor]

    Making good on President Obama’s promis during his State of the Union Address, the FCC has doubled its funding for schools to access broadband Internet. With schools increasing dependence on the Internet to provide high-quality education, poor Internet connections are posing a serious threat to the quality of education for many schools. The increase in funding to $2 billion will bring broadband to at least 20 million students in 15,000 schools.

  • California Lawmakers Push for Smartphone Kill Switches [NewsFactor]

    California lawmakers are proposing a new bill that would require all smartphones sold in the state to include a kills switch. A kill switch would render the phone useless if stolen, reducing the market for stolen phones. Currently, handsets are the number one stolen item in the country.

  • NYPD Test Driving Google Glass To Fight Crime on the Streets [NewsFactor]

    Robocop becomes a reality! Well, kind of. The New York City Police Department (NYPD) is experimenting with Google Glass. The new technology combined with face recognition software could allow police officers to recognize criminals within seconds.

and in Information Security news this week..

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and in Tech Industry news…

  • Twitter Shares Tumble After Results Announced [NewsFactor]

    Twitter shares plummeted $11.59, to $54.38, following news that its monthly active users came in at 241 million, well below expectations. Twitter’s engagement dropped to 148 billion Timeline Views, an 11 billion decline from the previous quarter.

  • Silicon Valley Economy Back at Dot-Com Era Highs [NewsFactor]

    Jobs, income and investment keep soaring in Silicon Valley, bringing it back to the economic high of the .com era. Unfortunately, the growth is also driving up housing costs and widening the gap between the rich and poor, according to a recently released report.

  • Sony Exits PC Business with Sale of Vaio Division [NewsFactor]

    Sony is getting out of the PC business. The technology firm announced Thursday that it will sell its once-promising Vaio PC brand to a Japanese investment firm.

  • Google Launches Chromebox for Meetings [NewsFactor]

    Google is getting into the video conferencing business with a new product called Chromebox for Meetings. The product is built on a soon-to-be-released Chromebox from Asus that will sell for $179, and adds a high-definition camera with a Zeiss autofocus lens, a combined dual omni-directional microphone and speaker unit with a noise filter, and a remote control with a full QWERTY keyboard. The system connects to a hi-def TV to provide high quality video conferencing for up to 15 users using Google Hangouts.

  • Amazon Integrates ‘Augmented Reality’ for Faster Buying [NewsFactor]

    Amazon is adding a new feature to its iPhone app that allows shoppers to photo any item to purchase it from Amazon. The company says that the new feature will allow shoppers to purchase items in 2 seconds rather than the current 30 seconds.

and finally…

  • Robots with Insect Brains [Freie Universit√§t Berlin]

    Robots with insect brains. It sounds like the title of a bad sci-fi movie, but it’s a reality at Freie University in Berlin. Researchers there have replicated the nervous system of the honeybee in neural network software and are using it to control a small robotic vehicle. The bee’s brain perceives visual input from a camera on the robot, and reacts to its environment to move the robot about.

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