Latest Technology News

Andy runs Android on your Mac, Windows 7 and 8 desktop

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Almost three years on from its first release, BlueStacks is probably still the easiest way to run Android apps on your Windows desktop. But it also has issues: performance can be a problem, and you don’t get full control over your virtual device.

Andy is a new contender which takes a different approach, running an Android image with VirtualBox. It can be much more awkward to configure, but performance is great, and every aspect of the system can be tweaked to suit your needs.

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VESA announces DisplayPort 1.3 standard -- enables 5K resolution

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My first-ever monitor was a 13-inch Packard Bell CRT; it came bundled with the desktop. At the time, it was rather impressive, but by today's standards, it is trash. However, I had that monitor for close to 10 years before upgrading to a flat-screen LCD. When LCD monitors became affordable, the resolution was secondary thought; the fact that it was thin and light made it a must-have. As time marched on however, resolution became a runaway train that moved the market.

While I am perfectly content with 1080p, 4K resolution is ready to become the new normal. Before you invest in that upgrade however, you may want to check out this news from VESA regarding DisplayPort 1.3. You see, this new standard has the ability to do 5K video; is 4K resolution already yesterday's news?

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PVU, ILMT, LPAR, IPAA and IPLA -- IBM's licensing jargon decoded

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Software licensing jargon used by the different software vendors makes up some of the most complex and potentially confusing terminology to have emerged from the technology industry. As one of the biggest vendors of all, IBM creates more than its fair share of confusion amongst enterprises and has developed some of the most complex software licensing metrics and compliance requirements.

It is essential to be on top of IBM's licensing jargon because its software is so prevalent in the datacenter (and everywhere else). So what are the key terms and acronyms that anyone charged with managing IBM software needs to know?

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Spotify arrives on Amazon Fire TV, requires Premium subscription

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Amazon continues to grow the ecosystem for its set-top box, the Fire TV. While its portfolio of offerings hasn't yet reached Roku level, the platform is much newer and still getting its legs under it. Today it expands a bit more with the addition of Spotify.

The music steaming service launched today on the Amazon box, though it does require users to have a Premium subscription, which will set you back a few dollars per month.

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RichEdit is a surprising WordPad replacement

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If you need a free editor for Windows then checking out a few Notepad replacements is a good place to start: EverEditTotalEdit ProfessionalFXiTE are just a few we’ve covered in the past.

But if plain text editing isn’t enough then you might be interested in RichEdit, a portable WordPad replacement which supports both plain and rich text files.

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Hate U2? Apple offers a tool to remove the free Songs of Innocence album from your iTunes library

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At the end of its iPhone 6/6 Plus/Apple Watch launch last week, the tech giant kindly gave everyone a gift -- a free U2 album. Songs of Innocence is the first album from the Irish band in five years, and Apple made it instantly available to all 500 million plus iTunes registered users. Which was a nice thing to do, after all who doesn’t like a free gift?

It turns out quite a few people were less than pleased to discover U2's new album appearing in their music collections whether they wanted it or not. If you’re one of those people unhappy about the presence of the album, and despite hunting for an easy way of removing it, still haven’t found what you’re looking for, don’t worry -- Apple has released a new tool for the job.

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Apple proves that moats are for dummies

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As we all know, Apple last week announced two new iPhones, a payment service (ApplePay), and a line of Apple Watches that require iPhones to work. There’s not much I can say about these products that you can’t read somewhere else. They are bigger and better than what preceded them and -- in the case of ApplePay and the AppleWatch -- just different. They are all topnotch products that will stand out in the market and have good chances of being successful. So instead of writing about products we already know about, I’d like to write about moats to protect products from competition.

Moats, as you know, are defensive fortifications typically built to surround castles, making them harder to storm. In order to even get to the castle, first you have to get past the moat which might be filled with water and that water might, in turn, be covered with burning oil.

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Linux Mint 17.1 gets yet another female codename -- is it sexist or endearing?

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For some reason, people tend to name inanimate objects after women. Whether it's something like a gun, car or guitar, some kind of feminine moniker may be attached. Sure, it is arguably sexist, but I would argue it isn't, since a negative connotation is not attached. People love cars, guns and guitars; the name is a term of endearment.

While I love guns and cars as much as the next guy, I also love technology. One of my favorite hobbies is tinkering with Linux and Mint is a distribution I use often. This distro is usually named after women, such as Lisa, Olivia, and Nadia to name a few. Today, the Linux Mint team announces the newest codename.

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Ashampoo 3D CAD Architecture 5 introduces 64-bit support, optional ribbon user interface

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Berlin-based developer has released Ashampoo 3D CAD Architecture 5.0, a major new version of its commercial CAD software for home and garden design projects.

Version 5.0 adds 64-bit support for improved performance, plus debuts a new, simplified ribbon-based UI as well as adding support for 2D fill patterns and textures.

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Auslogics unveils Driver Updater

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Australian utilities developer Auslogics has released Driver Updater, a commercial tool which can update all your PC drivers with a click.

If you’ve tried anything similar, the program’s core abilities won’t surprise you. Launch a scan and any outdated drivers are quickly listed, along with the dates and times of the latest version. You’re then able to update all your drivers, or just a select few.

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iPhone 6 and 6 Plus set sales record, but, hey, Apple can sell 4 million of anything

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Are you one of the 4 million? That's the number of iPhone and iPhone 6 Plus pre-orders during the first 24 hours, according to Apple. We don't have comparative number for iPhone 5s and 5c, as Apple gave a three-day figure of 9 million last year. But in September 2012, iPhone 5 topped 2 million the first day.

In one of the funnier Hitler parody videos, the dictator says: "If Apple sold Jony Ive's gym sweat, millions would also buy that!" (Ive is Apple's chief designer.) The point: Apple can sell millions of anything. CEO Tim Cook brags "record sales" -- and they're nothing to snicker about -- but would you expect anything less?

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Comcast could cut off customers who use the Tor browser

Comcast could cut off customers who use the Tor browser

Last week there were net neutrality protests from a number of big names in the online world. This week there is controversy courtesy of Comcast -- described by DeepDotWeb as "the most hated company in America" -- as the firm apparently declares war on Tor.

The web browser -- one favored by those concerned about their privacy -- has been branded "illegal" by Comcast according to DeepDotWeb and customer reports appearing on the /r/darknetmarkets subreddit (reddit itself having banned subreddits associated with the Fappening). Customers are reporting having been warned that use of Tor is against Comcast's term of use and could result in a termination of service.

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IT professionals not confident they can prevent cyber attacks

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Despite the number of high profile attacks in recent months, many organizations are still lacking confidence in their ability to prevent a cyber attack or data breach.

These are the findings of a new survey from risk consultancy firm Protiviti which also shows that companies aren't properly preparing for crises and often don’t have adequate core data policies.

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Microsoft buys Minecraft, reasons are uncertain

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There's no denying Minecraft is a wildly popular game that many people, both old and young, enjoy. It's also multi-platform, making it extremely profitable and available to many customers. Perhaps that's why Microsoft has announced it has purchased the franchise.

It's hard to say the motive behind this move -- the game does run on Xbox and Windows, of course -- but how does the software giant hope to recoup the money? After all, $2.5 billion is an awful lot to recover from.

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Moto G (2014): The same, but different [Review]

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What's in a name? A smartphone by any other name would still make calls and texts, right? Not according to Motorola it won't. The Moto G was Motorola's best-selling phone to date, despite its budget status. So in a not-so-subtle attempt to recreate that handsets' success, what has Motorola called its successor? The Moto G of course.

No "Moto G 2" or "Moto G+" or "Moto G 2nd generation" moniker here, the 2014 edition of the Moto G has swanned in as an out-and-out replacement of its older brother that boasts some seriously upgraded specs.

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