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Posts Tagged ‘App’

RIM Trying To Woo Customers With Porn, Gambling Apps?

February 24th, 2012 02:58 admin View Comments

Blackberry

AZA43 writes “Everybody knows that BlackBerry-maker RIM is hurting these days. But is it hurting enough to try to attract new customers with the promise of porn and/or gambling apps? A new rating system added to RIM’s BlackBerry App World store suggests that it just may be that desperate. The new ‘Adult’ rating covers, ‘graphic sexual content, graphic nudity,’ ‘graphic violence,’ and gambling apps ‘as permitted by law.’ And that suggests RIM will allow this kind of content into App World, in stark contrast to Apple’s no-porn-on-the-iPhone stand.”

Source: RIM Trying To Woo Customers With Porn, Gambling Apps?

The Dark Side of Digital Distribution

February 24th, 2012 02:06 admin View Comments

Businesses

An anonymous reader writes “Game journalist Stuart Campbell has written an incisive piece on how the digital distribution model users have grown to know and love over the past several years still has some major problems that go beyond even the DRM dilemma. He provides an example of an app developer using very shady update techniques to screw over people who have legitimately purchased their app. Touch Racing Nitro, a retro racing game, launched to moderate success. After tinkering with price points to get the game to show up on the top download charts, the developers finally made it free for a period of four months. ‘Then the sting came along. About a week ago (at time of writing), the game received an “update,” which came with just four words of description – “Now Touch Racing Free!” As the game was already free, users could have been forgiven for thinking this wasn’t much of a change. But in fact, the app thousands of them had paid up to £5 for had effectively just been stolen. Two of the game’s three racing modes were now locked away behind IAP paywalls, and the entire game was disfigured with ruinous in-game advertising, which required yet another payment to remove.’”

Source: The Dark Side of Digital Distribution

Daily Wrap: The Facebook Class Action Lawsuit and more

February 23rd, 2012 02:03 admin View Comments

dailywrap-150x150.pngMurphy P.A. files a class action lawsuit against Facebook. This and more in today’s Daily Wrap.

Sometimes it’s difficult to catch everything that hits tech media in a day, so we wrap up some of the most talked about stories. We give you a daily recap of what you missed in the ReadWriteWeb Community, including a link to some of the most popular discussions in our offsite communities on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+ as well.

Facebook Faces Nationwide Class-Action Lawsuit

Facebook Faces Nationwide Class-Action Lawsuit

Murphy P. A. a Baltimore law firm, filed a class action lawsuit against Facebook, alleging that Facebook tracked user data after logging off of Facebook. Facebook ceased the process in September. While there are several similar state-level suits pending, this is the first nationwide suit that could encompass every U.S. user that signed up to Facebook before their cookies and privacy policy was updated.

From ReadWriteWeb reader, Clearfocuslaw:

More Must Read Stories:

Facebook Shares Could Be Overvalued by First Day of Trading

Facebook Shares Could Be Overvalued by First Day of Trading

More than 1,000 people are now trading shares of Facebook on private markets, well above the 50 to 100 that most companies have ahead of their initial public offering.

Sam Hamadeh, head of research firm PrivCo., who made the current shareholder estimates for Bloomberg News, said that has pushed Facebook’s valuation over $100 billion and could limit the returns the company’s first public investors will see if they buy shares soon after the company goes public. (more)

Stop Accepting Facebook Friend Requests

Stop Accepting Facebook Friend Requests

What happens when we don’t accept friend requests? Facebook brings them back in yet another attempt to “help” us get to know other people who may be in our network.

When Facebook first entered college campuses in 2004, we friended people we knew. It became a game, a way to waste time between classes and something to do when we should have been working on papers. There was no need for us to try and figure out who our mutual friends were because we saw them in real life on a daily basis. They sat next to us in classrooms, at lunch; we saw them at parties, we ate brunch together on the weekend. Things were simple. (more)

Twilio Brings VoIP Calling to Any App With New iOS SDK

Twilio Brings VoIP Calling to Any App With New iOS SDK

Imagine playing a game of Scrabble on your iPhone against your mother. You and Ma are competitive and these games tend to turn into rabid battles for literary supremacy. Also, she’s your mother so you want to talk about how things are with the family, your nephew and if Pa is taking that new job in Chicago. So, you press a button in the app and create a voice connection running over your data connection. No dialing, no minutes used. Just a data connection straight from the app. (more)

Survey: 88% of Businesses Can't Provide a Single Customer View

Survey: 88% of Businesses Can’t Provide a Single Customer View

If one of the goals of cloud computing is to enable anytime, anywhere access to a single view of a database, a study released today by the DataFlux division of SAS shows we may not be getting close to reaching it anytime soon. Some 551 data management professionals in North America were asked whether their businesses’ data centers enabled a single customer view (SCV) – one database or data store that defines customer data for all software and services. (more)

Bing Now Lets You Verify Whether Search Results Are About You

Bing Now Lets You Verify Whether Search Results Are About You

Ever Google someone before a blind date or deciding to hire them? Of course you have.

But going forward, if you choose to Bing them instead of Google them, you may end up getting results they have manually approved. Microsoft has launched Linked Pages for its Bing search engine. The feature, which is currently only available to users in the U.S., essentially lets you control what people see when they search you. (more)

The Holy Grail of Rich Location Data Made Easy With new SDKs from Geoloqi

The Holy Grail of Rich Location Data Made Easy With new SDKs from Geoloqi

The holy grail of mobile geo-location services is persistent, aware, real-time data delivered straight to your device. It is incredibly difficult to pull off. Especially if the idea is to, “give you vision beyond the Greek gods.” Accuracy, battery life and location-aware push messaging are hard to build and even harder to implement on a scalable basis. (more)

ResearchGate: It's Facebook for Scientists

ResearchGate: It’s Facebook for Scientists

It’s awesome to connect with other like-minded science folk on Facebook, the world’s largest social network, but sometimes you want to keep the talk insider baseball – and that means no interjections from your mom, brother and imaginary friends. Seriously. (more)

How DMCA Takedown Notices Work [Infographic]

How DMCA Takedown Notices Work [Infographic]

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act. Its “safe harbor” provision is what draws the line between pirates and legally legitimate Web companies. That line isn’t always crystal clear, as the ongoing saga of Grooveshark demonstrates.

Few would call the DMCA perfect, but its attempt at modestly redefining copyright for the digital age has had a major impact on the way the Web works, and in many cases has enabled innovation to flourish. Without it, sites like YouTube might not be what they are today. (more)

Do Not Track: The CAN-SPAM of 2012

Do Not Track: The CAN-SPAM of 2012

Remember in 2003, when the CAN SPAM Act was signed into law, how spam just stopped overnight? Yeah, me neither. Just as CAN SPAM did little to curb spam, having Google and Microsoft sign on to Do Not Track (DNT) still leaves a lot to be desired. (more)

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Source: Daily Wrap: The Facebook Class Action Lawsuit and more

What Apple’s Chomp Acquisition Means For the Future of the App Store

February 23rd, 2012 02:13 admin View Comments

Whenever somebody we know gets their first iPhone, it seems the first question out of their mouths is always the same. “What apps should I get?” It’s seldom anything about how the phone’s user interface works or how to do certain day-to-day tasks. That much tends to be obvious once even the least tech-savvy person gets their hands on an iOS device.

When it comes to finding applications, however, things are not always as straight forward. The iTunes App Store makes it easy to find the most popular apps or break them all down into general categories. If you’ve been using the device for awhile, the Genius recommendations can help, but even they can be of limited value. The selection has expanded so much over the last few years that app discovery has become a little cumbersome.

Apple knows this. To help build out a better system for app discovery, they just acquired a company called Chomp, Techcrunch reported today.

Chomp is, quite simply, a search engine for mobile applications. It spans both the iTunes App Store and Android Market and offers more sophisticated and contextually relevant results for search queries. As the company explains on its website, “Chomp’s proprietary algorithm learns the functions and topics of apps, so you can search based on what apps do, not just what they’re called.”

The company first grabbed attention in the mobile space by landing significant funding from well-known angel investors and venture capital firms. It counts among its advisors tech scene hotshots like Kevin Rose and Ashton Kutcher.

The Chomp acquistion is reportedly intended to help Apple completely overhaul the way apps are searched for and discovered in the App Store, according to Techcrunch.

With Chomp’s technology integrated, searches for iOS Apps will return more useful results and recommendations could be aided by additional data points, such as social cues and other aggregate user behavior data.

In the end, Apple’s selection of more than 500,000 mobile and tablet apps will be easier to sift through and developers should have an easier time getting exposure for their work.

Chomp also has a Google-style text ad platform in beta, although it’s not clear if that will play a role in Apple’s integration.

Source: What Apple’s Chomp Acquisition Means For the Future of the App Store

Twilio Brings VoIP Calling to Any App With New iOS SDK

February 23rd, 2012 02:48 admin View Comments

twilio_150x150.jpgImagine playing a game of Scrabble on your iPhone against your mother. You and Ma are competitive and these games tend to turn into rabid battles for literary supremacy. Also, she’s your mother so you want to talk about how things are with the family, your nephew and if Pa is taking that new job in Chicago. So, you press a button in the app and create a voice connection running over your data connection. No dialing, no minutes used. Just a data connection straight from the app.

Cloud communications company Twilio is making that possible. Today it is announcing a new native iOS software developer kit for its Twilio Client, allowing Voice-over-IP calls from any app. The future of telephony is in data connections, not wireless minutes and Twilio is looking to make the mobile carriers’ networks programmable for the next generation of app developers.

The Twilio Client iOS SDK is an extension of its browser-based SDK the company announced in 2011. The idea is to create a voice connection from any app, anywhere. Think of it as the smart device version of a walkie-talkie. It is a fairly simple but powerful idea.

We wrote about Twilio’s ability to disrupt the mobile carriers in January and the basic tenets hold true – when communications become IP based, the business model has to change. Twilio is just nudging the carriers in that direction. Yet, instead of outright disrupting the carriers, Twilio thinks that it can become a partner. The idea is to create value for the cellular network.

twilio_cloud_connect_diagram.jpg

“I actually think would be interested in a partnership opportunity with the carriers. I think something like Skype would be in competition with the carriers because they are going after the end users,” said Thomas Schiavone, Twilio’s project manager responsible for the iOS SDK. “We are an API on top of networks that the carriers have the opportunity to work with developers and add value to the networks, which is something that they need to do. We are trying to figure out how to give people an API that adds value to the network and new and interesting use cases as opposed to the traditional, ‘I want to call someone.’”

Unlike other companies that provide programmable VoIP solutions, Twilio does not institute a threshold to use its services. There are no minimum messages that need to be sent per month, no amount of minutes or data that a developer needs to hit to use the Twilio Client. The idea is to create ubiquity across the developer landscape as opposed to an artificially high limit that precludes smaller developers from adding an interesting feature like push-to-call in their apps.

From an enterprise standpoint, Twilio can add a lot of value to a single employee out of the office. The logic needed to create a call center is located in the Twilio cloud and accessible through its variety of SDKs. Since it creates a data connection, all an employee would need to become a IP PBX call center is an iPad and the proper software.

“What we really think is interesting is that it can run the gamut between consumers and enterprise; how do I improve my business practices?” Schiavone said. “All that logic is internal to Twilio. You can think of the Twilio Client as sort of the end-user experience that you present to the user and all the smarts and intelligence are not in the SDK. All the brains and smarts are in the Twilio cloud.”

Twilio has an Android SDK in beta that developers can sign up for. The company will continue to evolve the Twilio client, giving it more robust features.

“You will see continued investment in this Twilio Client with Web calls, IP next-gen infrastructure because I think there is a lot of value we can give to developers and in extension, to users,” Schiavone said.

What do you think about the “programmable network?” Is a voice connection something you need in your app? Let us know in the comments.

Source: Twilio Brings VoIP Calling to Any App With New iOS SDK

Flickr Can’t Go Back To What It Once Was

February 22nd, 2012 02:30 admin View Comments

shutterstock_byebye-dog-cat.jpgFlickr will launch a major makeover in its quest to return to its once young and sexy past, according to reports from BetaBeat.

The new Flickr homepage will look more like the slick, image-only homepages of online visual pinboard Pinterest and photo-sharing app Pixable. There will be little white space on the homepage. In the new version, photos will appear four times their current size. They will lie on the page, scattered about like puzzle pieces slipped together without overlap. Flickr is repositioning itself to look more like an app, which is right in line with Yahoo’s “mobile first” strategy. But this is a Web-only photo community – and if Instagram is showing us anything, it’s that the future of photography is in smartphones.

Next week, users will be able to see changes to their contacts page, which includes the removal of some whitespace. In late March, users will notice significant changes to the photo uploading process.

“This is an evolving design, one that will develop over time, starting with the redesign of the contacts page,” a Flickr spokesperson tells ReadWriteWeb. “There will also be more changes to the site later in the year.”

flickr-photo-homepage-look.jpg

Photography by Smartphone Users, for Smartphone Users

Photo-sharing service Instagram is only available as an iPhone app, and it already has 15 million users. For more than a year, the Android app has been “coming soon,” or so says CEO Kevin Systrom. According to data from Nielsen, Android users make up more than 46% of the smartphone market. Imagine all those Android users in addition to the already Instagram-obsessed iPhone users. And this is all without an existing Web version of the Instagram service. Plus, with a variety of third-party applications utilizing the Instagram API, the idea of a Web-only service doesn’t feel very important at all.

When Kodak announced that it was preparing to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection earlier this year, it became clear that the nature of photography was in for a major change. Indeed, point-and-shoots and SLRs were hardly in use; instead, people were taking photos with their iPhones, first and foremost. Kodak launched two Facebook-integrated cameras at CES 2012, but it might be too late even for that.

But here’s an interesting detail: Apple iPhone 4 and 4S, followed by the iPhone 3G and 3GS are the most popular cameras in the Flickr community. If Flickr can retool to focus on these users, who are most likely also Instagram users, there is a chance they can come back. But it will take some careful strategizing, and a product that’s even more gimmicky fun than Instagram’s tinted filters.

Will Flickr’s new layout for the Web matter, especially when photography is becoming mostly smartphone-focused?

Here’s a photo from my now-dormant Flickr stream. I just pinned it to one of my Pinterest boards and posted it to Facebook. It will drift downstream to other users, my friends and the Internet at large. Would that same thing have happened on Flickr?

Sailboat-1.jpg

Lead image courtesy of Shutterstock. Sailboat photograph by Alicia Eler.

Source: Flickr Can’t Go Back To What It Once Was

Mozilla is Placing Itself in Position to be the King of the Mobile Web

February 22nd, 2012 02:15 admin View Comments

Firefox_Fennex_150x150.jpegHTML5 Web apps are going to become a definitive section of the mobile ecosystem in 2012. The difference between the mobile Web and its native counterparts is that there is no one company seen as the de facto leader of the movement. Apple leads iOS, Google touts Android, Microsoft and Nokia push Windows Phone. The mobile Web? Lots of players, no clear leader.

One company is in the perfect position to take the reigns. What do you think about when you hear terms like “open,” “cross-platform,” and “standards?” Certainly not Apple. Facebook has the chops to lead the mobile Web but is closed system flies against the open Web community. When it comes to developers, resources, leadership and coding acumen, one company stands ahead of the mobile Web pack. If Mozilla wants it, the mobile Web is there for the taking.

At Mobile World Congress next week, Mozilla will open up its Marketplace for mobile Web apps to developers. The idea of the Mozilla Apps Marketplace is to create an app store model for HTML5 apps that can work on any HTML5 compatible device. It will be the first major mobile Web app store from a major player.

There will be three main features of Mozilla Web Apps:

  • The Mozilla Marketplace, the first operating system- and device-independent market for apps based on open Web technologies like HTML5, JavaScript and CSS.
  • New Mozilla-proposed APIs that advance the Web as a platform and will be submitted to the W3C for standardization.
  • A new identity system for the Web that puts users in control of their content, tying apps to the user and not the device or platform.

The identity system frees users from device specific apps. Mobile Web apps will be available anywhere a browser is present.

Developers can start submitting apps to the Mozilla Apps Marketplace starting at Mobile World Congress. The Marketplace will be available to consumers later in 2012.

We have covered Mozilla’s plans to create a Web-based mobile operating system several times. The idea hinges around the Boot2Gecko project and will be built to be open and compatible with standards such as JavaScript, CSS3 and HTML5. See the roadmap for Mozilla’s mobile plans here.

When it comes to the mobile Web, there are precious few companies set to lead like Mozilla. Facebook has no plans for an app store, Zynga is tied to Facebook and the social graph, Google may endorse the open Web but its mobile initiative is tied to Android. Mozilla has the chops and the mind share to pull it off.

b2g_ui_mozilla.jpg

There are several companies and developer studios doing great things with HTML5. Sencha and appMobi are both working on the spec and the ecosystem that will help developers create dynamic Web apps and get paid. Brightcove is taking great steps with HTML5 video and there are a variety of game development studios (like Zynga) that are pushing the bounds of the spec. Taken together, this is the HTML5 ecosystem but none of those companies are positioned to be the leader.

This is Mozilla’s chance to become a major player in the mobile ecosystem. It can chip away at the base of the native platforms while setting itself up to be the location that developers flock to with mobile Web apps. The ability to become a central hub of developer activity is what has made Apple and Google’s mobile platforms so lucrative.

The first step is the Mozilla App Marketplace. It will be the first major app store for the mobile Web and developers should pay attention to how it evolves. Are you planning on submitting an app to Mozilla? What is the potential of this Marketplace? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

Source: Mozilla is Placing Itself in Position to be the King of the Mobile Web

Buzz Rethinks How the iPhone Handles Contacts

February 21st, 2012 02:50 admin View Comments

buzzapp150.jpgBuzz Contacts for iPhone is the latest offering from savvy apps, makers of the popular alternative calendar app, Agenda. Both apps take built-in iOS apps and offer new interfaces to save users time and sanity. Actually, Buzz takes on three apps at once: Contacts, Phone and Messages. It also uses FaceTime, a feature another popular third-party contacts app doesn’t have.

If only Buzz handled the receiving of texts, voicemails and missed calls, you’d never need those other apps again. Instead of presenting contacts in a long, scrolling list like the built-in apps do, Buzz lets you add favorites to big, tappable grids of four people at a time. You can sort the grids into groups like “family,” “friends,” “work” or whatever you want.

buzzapp1.jpgWhat Buzz Does Do

When you add someone to a grid, you can choose your preferred method for contacting them: phone, FaceTime, email or text. On the grid, the person’s name is shown along with the icon for your chosen method of contact. Double-tapping on that tile shows you the rest of the options. Within a group, you can swipe right through pages of four people at a time, or you can swipe left to see the condensed list.

You can also easily send group emails or texts to some or all members of the group by tapping the bar at the bottom. You can open a blank message or use “status taps” to pre-load a message like “Running late. Be there soon.” Finally, there’s a dialer, so you can place calls to people who aren’t in your contacts.

That’s all there is to it. It’s a simple, beautiful interface for performing some of the iPhone’s most integral functions efficiently.

What Buzz Doesn’t Do

buzzapp2.jpgThe biggest drawback for any contacts app is that you can’t receive inbound communication through it, so users must still have Messages and Phone visible somewhere. It’s not really a replacement; it’s just a faster manager for outbound communication. You also can’t add or edit contacts through Buzz, which is a little bit of a pain.

The other things Buzz doesn’t do are best illustrated in comparison to Mysterious Trousers’ Dialvetica, another popular contacts app. I’m sure the makers of each app are groaning right now, since they’re already rivals in calendar apps. But one isn’t better than the other. They’re different philosophies. Which one works best for you is a matter of personal style.

Dialvetica manages your contacts for you. It’s a changing list that sorts people automatically by whom you contact most. In Buzz, you sort contacts manually, putting them into groups. In Dialvetica, there’s no setup time, but the drawback is that your contacts move around. You have to set Buzz up yourself, but things stay where they are once you put them there.

The one thing Dialvetica definitely does that Buzz definitely doesn’t do is Google Voice. If you have a second number with Google Voice, it’s in Dialvetica as yet another call and text option. That would be a great feature in Buzz as well.

Buzz Contacts from Ken Yarmosh on Vimeo.

You can download Buzz from the App Store for $0.99.

Source: Buzz Rethinks How the iPhone Handles Contacts

The App Store Is A Republic

February 21st, 2012 02:31 admin View Comments

obama_sotu_2011.jpgIt comes down to this fundamental question: How much responsibility do you want for the workings of your device? The religious divide between iOS and Android hinges on this point. There are nerds – and I always use the term affectionately – whose nerdliness depends upon that responsibility. Without it, they feel no control over their computer. There is no doubt that Android places more of that responsibility on the user than iOS does.

Without setting up straw men or comparing apples to oranges, I’ll offer an observation: some nerds believe that Apple does not allow its users to achieve their full nerdly potential because it limits their responsibility. We should reframe this argument. Apple nerds do not believe that nerdliness hinges upon responsibility. We would prefer to concentrate our nerd powers on the things we do with our computers.

Appleed_s.jpgBut we do not surrender control over our devices to the corporation as the Android straw man might allege. Far from it. We elect representatives to fight for control, and sometimes – though not always – Apple listens to them.

The App Store is a republic. The citizens vote with their Apple IDs, downloading the apps that best represent them. The makers of those apps are elected officials. But it’s not a congress of equals. It’s a meritocracy. The influence of representatives is proportionate to the importance of their apps. Apple, of course, is the president. It has veto power. But it can’t make good laws with a hostile congress.

We All Depend On Something

Many Android-style nerds have already thrown up their hands in disgust. This notion of representative platform governance is an assault on their beliefs. It’s against the Orthodox Hacker Way. I honor and respect that belief. Thank the Makers there are multiple platform choices.

But that’s just it. We all ultimately depend on the Makers. We all sacrifice some control over our platforms. What are you going to do, make your own phone? Maybe someday. But today, we all give up responsibility for some things in exchange for control of other things.

Apples & Androids

Android users maintain the ability to root their devices, but they might be out of luck for future software updates. Apple users must fight against Apple for the ability to jailbreak. But I submit that Apple nerds don’t need to jailbreak to be nerdy. Apple users accept the laws of Apple’s land, and that is just a different-strokes-for-different-folks proposition.

Within those borders, Apple users are free to be nerds about their tasks, their solutions, their workflows and their aesthetics. They elect the best developers in their world to defend the platform and write the code. They exercise a different kind of nerdiness, a soft nerdiness of finding the best tool for the job, down to every minute detail. If there is no best tool, anyone with the skill, the time and the sensibilities can build it themselves. They can run for office in the App Store.

The Union & The Confederacy

Android has apps. It has app marketplaces, but it’s a loose confederacy. Device and OS fragmentation, a relative free-for-all of app availability and a weak judicial system – or app review process – mean that users must cobble together solutions and developers must cobble together businesses. In exchange, Android users, developers and OEMs alike retain more personal responsibility for the experience.

In Apple country, the experience is consistent and set by the president. The App Store is the House of Representatives, and votes are one-to-one. An app means the same thing to all users, so each app is a vote. If Apple users did not vote, if they blindly accepted the solutions put forth by Apple, then they would surrender their nerd cred. But they do. They vote for third-party developers. They vote by the hundreds of millions.

marco_ipad_cleaning.jpg

Responsibility To Govern

As elected representatives, Apple developers are in a position to speak truth to power. When Apple’s unilateral decisions threaten the Republic, developers speak out. Apple doesn’t always bow to the will of its congress. But it does listen.

When Apple launched iOS 5, it changed the way the system handled two directories: /Caches and /tmp. Before iOS 5, those were safe places for apps to store data. With the introduction of iCloud as Apple’s preferred place for files, Apple began to “clean” those directories when devices were low on space. That threatened Instapaper, which stores articles for offline reading in /Caches.

Lesser nerds would have rolled over. President Apple had issued a decree. But Speaker Marco did not give in. He took to his influential blog and outlined the problem. The functionality of a successful and beloved app was in jeopardy.

A month later, when developers received the iOS 5.0.1 beta, the problem had been solved.

Threats To The Republic

It would be naïve to believe that a republic can function without corruption. The bylaws of Apple’s congress are more strict than the tenuous agreements of the Android confederacy, but its app review process is still rife with abuse. The plague of low-quality scam apps could break users’ trust in their government, and the republic could be lost.

But Phill Ryu, a newly elected representative behind the new hit iPhone app Clear, made an eloquent speech on the floor foretelling a troubling future if Apple does not address this problem.

Apple users and developers share a nerdy devotion to user experience, the highest ideal of Apple itself. With developers like Ryu keeping Apple’s shortcomings in the spotlight, it’s hard to believe that Apple would not act to solve this problem.

As Apple moves toward a more unified ecosystem across iOS and OS X, its executive orders will be bold. Its sandboxing and its challenges to the notion of the file system worry some citizens and developers. But this is how sausage gets made. There have been dark times in Apple’s republic, and they may come again. But as long as their nerdly representatives have a say, Apple nerds will be safe to practice their religion.

Top Image: Official White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson

iPad “cleaning” screenshot via Marco.org via someone on Twitter Marco couldn’t remember

Source: The App Store Is A Republic

Georgia Tech iPhone App Could Help Blind Users Text

February 19th, 2012 02:03 admin View Comments

Technology

MojoKid writes “Researchers at Georgia Tech university have built a prototype app for touch-screen mobile devices that is vying to be a complete solution for texting without the need to look at a mobile gadget’s screen. In theory, it should greatly help the blind interact with mobile phones, but it could help just about anyone looking for a more efficient way to interact. Research has shown that gesture-based texting is a viable solution for eyes-free written communication in the future, making obsolete the need for users to look at their devices while inputting text. The free open-source app, called BrailleTouch, incorporates the Braille writing system used by the visually impaired. Early studies with visually impaired participants proficient in Braille typing have demonstrated that users can input up to 32 words per minute with 92 percent accuracy with the prototype app for the iPhone.”

Source: Georgia Tech iPhone App Could Help Blind Users Text