Apr 1, 2011

Microsoft application creates 3D model using a cellphone

Using your smartphone to take regular, or heck, even 3D images, is so last-gen -- thanks to Microsoft'sInteractive Visual Media Group, we shall soon be able to use its new app to generate virtual 3D models. For example, if you want to capture that Ferrari on your neighbor's driveway, you'll need to circumambulate it while shooting around 40 photos. The final product, which is compiled using some beefed up PhotoSynth magic as each shot is uploaded to the cloud, is a beautifully crafted 3D model that can be panned around surprisingly smoothly. Hit play on the video below to feast your eyes on Redmond's new trick.

Avaak Vue Gen 2 wire-free video monitoring

Peeping Toms and would-be spies, rejoice! The Vue wire-free video cameras have reached the second generation and now add motion detection and a more rugged outdoor version to the mix. Pricing is a mixed bag: kits start at $199 and include a motion detection camera, the base station, and the mounting base. Extra cams can be had for $159 for an individual outdoor camera with motion detection, indoor camera with motion detection is $129, and a run of the mill indoor camera is $99. The brilliant bit here is this is pretty much a zero setup affair: attach the cameras to the included magnetic mounts (with adhesive, no less), fire up the base station, and off you go. As with many devices launched recently, mobile apps are key, and the Vue's apps are a decent bunch. We had a peek at both the BlackBerry and iPhone flavors -- Android is also supported -- and either will allow video from the remote cameras to be recorded, some small amount of zoom and pan, grab screen shots, and have a peek at all your cameras at once. The required online service to manage it all is free for the first year and $19.95 per year after; you can keep opting for the free version after the first year, but lose the mobile app support, pan / zoom, and all recording features.

Motorola recognizes, investigates Atrix 4G voice quality issues

Experiencing voice quality woes with your otherwise delightful Atrix 4G? You aren't alone, buster. In fact, the issue has become so prevalent and widespread that Motorola itself has taken notice, with one of its forum managers creating a sticky to confirm that the company is looking into things. As of now, there's no clear indication of why the problem is emerging, but the positive news is that you aren't actually losing your hearing -- it's a legitimate quandary, and if you'd care to help Motorola fix it, you can visit that source link to tell your story. Till then, we hear local phone providers are offering unbeatable deals on landline connections.

VIDEO - Microsoft Research teases Windows Phones controlling Surfaces and crazy desktop UIs

Hey, look, at this point, we just want ourselves some good, old-fashioned copy and paste -- but we'll give Microsoft some credit for looking a year (or two, or ten) beyond that watermark at what could be coming down the pike for human-machine interaction -- and specifically, how phones could play a role. In a presentation and promotional video pulled together this week, Microsoft Research boss Craig Mundie shows how you could tilt your smartphone to control a bubbly, colorful look into your personal life on your desktop machine and how you could snap a photo and then drop the handset onto a Surface for instant transfer (perhaps a bit like HP's Touch to Share), among other gems. Of course, this is all pure research at this point -- it's any guess whether these comments could make the jump to production, and if so, when -- but it's fun to watch. Follow the break for video.

Video - SlingPlayer Mobile for Android - now with high quality

There you have it. High quality video streams, just like the iPhone has -- undoubtedly provided by your SOLO or PRO-HD Slingbox -- on your Android SlingPlayer Mobile client. If you haven't already copped, it'll be $29.99, while owners should just mash the upgrade all button until they're rewarded with version 1.2. Hit read more for the video.

Handsets alter brain activity -- scientists don't know what that means

Cellphones are bad, mmkay? Or at least that is what many want us to believe, what with all these warning labels and studies telling us that mobile users will end up with brain cancer and kidney damage. Not to mention the dangers of phone addiction -- horror of horrors -- for our youth. Now, the National Institutes of Health have shown that radiation from your phone's antenna increases brain activity. Using positron emission tomography (PET) scans on 47 individuals with a muted phone on each ear (to prevent aural brain stimulation), the study found a seven percent increase in brain activity in the area closest to the phones' antennas when receiving a call. The catch -- scientists don't know "whether this is detrimental or if it could even be beneficial," so don't go trading your Cell-Mate in for a Bluetooth headset just yet.

Android 2.3.3 gives you another reason to want it: WebM support

WebM support has been added into Google's mobile OS, with the lowest compatible version being today's freshly introduced Android 2.3.3. Google has already demonstrated its intention to brute-force this format into our lives, which we'll be quite happy to accept just as soon as Gingerbread starts appearing on more devices than its own Nexi.

Samsung Galaxy S II first with MHL port for dual-purpose USB or HDMI out

There's a small but important fact about Samsung's newest Android flagship. The Galaxy S II is the first smartphone to feature an MHL port. MHL, as you'll recall, was first announced in 2008 as the Mobile High-Definition video Link "standard" for mobile devices promoted by a consortium that includes Nokia, Samsung, Toshiba, Sony, and Silicon Image. So yeah, another mobile interconnect standard just like DisplayPort, mini-HDMI, or Light Peak. Essentially, the micro-USB shaped MHL jack at the base of the Galaxy S II features internal circuitry that recognizes USB or MHL impedance and then automatically switches the phone into USB data / charging or MHL audio / video / charging modes. A special 5-wire micro-USB to HDMI cable lets you send video and audio to existing HDMI-equipped displays. Unfortunately, the TV won't charge the Galaxy S II during playback unless you insert a phone charger adapter between the GSII and TV or wait for MHL-enabled TVs to begin shipping later this year. Once connected, you can then use your TV's HDMI-CEC compatible remote to navigate and control the Galaxy S II's media interface. The GSII is just the first MHL device with a half-dozen phones, at least one tablet, and a few TVs coming this summer.

Google disables contact sync in Facebook for Android, but only Nexus S for now

You know that Android 2.3.3 update that came for Nexus S smartphones. Google's decided to take this opportunity to push its data portability agenda with regards to Android. Simply put, the feature of the Facebook for Android app to provide the social network's stored contact information to your Nexus S has been revoked from here on out, and as soon as you get the update all that contact information will disappear from your contacts app on your phone. 

We've spent a while chatting with a Google rep, and they explained that the company is actually just reinstating the official rules -- typically, apps have to use Android's contacts API, but Facebook was granted an exception which allowed its contacts to remain in the cloud. In effect, what Google's claims it's doing here is the same thing that would happen if you uninstalled the app, or deleted your Facebook account -- your contacts created and stored in the network would no longer be visible in your contacts app. In other words, Google's attempting to push Facebook into making that data available to itself, which would be handy (think of the other apps that could use your Facebook data on the go) but potentially worrisome in terms of privacy as well. Either way, the argument is not likely to directly affect many individuals in the short term -- Google tells us that Facebook's sync privileges will only be revoked in the Nexus S (not the Nexus One) and other "lead devices" yet to come.

Samsung develops mobile DRAM capable of 12.8GB/sec data transfers, making all other memory jealous

Much like clockwork, Samsung's memory labs are cranking out yet another innovation in the mobile DRAM sector, with the goal being to make the next (next) generation Galaxy Tab -- and any other mobile device relying on Samsung memory -- faster than ever. This go 'round, the crew has developed a 1Gb mobile DRAM module with a wide I/O interface for smartphones and tablets, enabling it to transmit data at 12.8GB/sec. For those keeping count, that's an eightfold increase in bandwidth compared to LPDDR2 DRAM chips, and the company has also managed to trim power consumption by 87 percent all the while. In order to boost the data transfer rate, Samsung's new wide I/O DRAM uses 512 pins for input and output, dwarfing the 32 pins used in the previous generation. Following this, Sammy's hoping to provide 20nm-class 4Gb wide I/O mobile DRAM sometime in 2013, but we're hoping to see this particular development sashay into tablets that hit the market long before then. Sadly, there's no specific word on when, but you know we'll be handing that information over just as soon as we get it.

Snapkeys keyless keyboard

Snapkey's system is actually quite simple: there are four boxes to tap for letters -- plus backspace and space -- and each represents a type of letter. Top left includes letters with one point that touches down like "i," bottom left includes closed letters such as "d," top right includes letters with two points on the bottom, and bottom right curved and letters with a flat base. Sounds simple? it is, or kinda. Of course there's a learning curve, in essence you have to rethink the way you type; as we immediately found we had to pay more attention to the letters in words, or at least the shape of them. The system we were shown was running on a jailbroken iPad, but we were told it could be moved to just about any platform. Is it as revolutionary as the buzz suggests?

BMW Connected hitting 1 Series cars first, lets you tweet your disregard for speed limits

BMW Connected hitting 1 Series cars first, will let you Tweet your disregard for speed limits
The BMW Connected app has been available for a few months now. We knew cars supporting the feature would be coming in March, and now we know which ones will be first: BMW's svelte little 1 Series. To enable the streaming radio and even streaming video (when the car is stationary) on the dash-mounted display you'll need to tick the box next to a €150 (about $205) option. In your suitably equipped car you can then get your Facebook and Twitter feeds read to you and even provide automated responses using "vehicle information such as current speed, outside temperature or navigation destination." We're hoping the car can apply some flowery language to such hard data, like "bat out of hell" for those particularly warm days in which you're driving at a high rate of speed from an unpleasant point of origin.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...