News Fuse for November 22, 2013

Microsoft

Here are today's top 10 stories from Tech News Today for November 22, 2013:

  1. Microsoft launched the Xbox One by taking over Times Square and the West End of London among other launch events. In a further example of their different focus, Microsoft gave fans the entertainment of Macklemore and Ryan Lewis while Sony gave news about games at their respective launch events. But showing they have common ground, the Xbox One already comes with reports of a buggy disc drive and Xbox Live outages just like Sony’s flashing blue light and PSN outage. Let the console wars BEGIN! Read more at theverge.com.

  2. In the Apple vs. Samsung damages retrial case, the jury ruled that Samsung owes Apple $290 million more than the previous judgment. Originally, Samsung owed Apple $1 billion, but that number was cut to $640 million due to a miscalculation by the jury. All in all, Samsung now owes Apple about $930 million for patent infringement. Samsung said it would appeal. So this case will never ever ever end. Until it does. Read more at gigaom.com.

  3. Now that you can use electronic devices on takeoff and landing in most US and European flights, why stop there? The FCC is considering a proposal to allow cell phone calls to be placed while above 10,000 feet. They almost proposed this before but stopped because of the shouting. Even if the FCC does approve, the FAA and the airlines themselves would all have to sign off on the deal as well. Read more at theverge.com.

  4. Dropbox revamped its iOS app. Version 3.0 brings an updated look that matches iOS 7 a bit better. On the functional side, Dropbox added in AirDrop support so you can send files to other iOS devices over WiFi or Bluetooth. Dropbox also says its revamped the PDF viewer. Read more at techcrunch.com.

  5. AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile have all agreed to stop billing US customers for spam texts used in a practice sometimes called cramming. The move comes after an effort of 45 states attorneys general, led by Vermont’s William Sorrell. Verizon says it is in the process of winding down its premium text messaging service but is keeping it running for the purposes of charities and political campaign donations. Read more at theverge.com.

  6. Google will be holding a two-day hackathon in Mountain View to let developers get a handle on the Cast SDK for Chromecast. Google invited developers from AirCast and CyanogenMod to the event. The Android Chromecast app also got an update that makes it easier to handle troubleshooting. Read more at engadget.com.

  7. In an effort to encourage people to learn to code, Wolfram Research announced it’s partnering with the Raspberry Pi Foundation to include copies of Mathematica and an early version of Wolfram Language on every Raspberry Pi at no extra charge. The base model of Raspberry Pi costs $25. Those who already own a Raspberry Pi can download the software starting today at raspberrypi.org. Read more at theverge.com.

  8. Mozilla released its 2012 annual financial report. Revenue for the year was $311 million compared to $163 million in 2011. 90% of Mozilla's 2012 revenue came from Google. Google and Mozilla's deal continues until 2014. Read more at thenextweb.com.

  9. One common criticism of the US DMCA is that it can be abused to censor speech since bringing abusers to court is costly and complicated. WordPress’s parent company Atomattic is helping with that end of the problem, joining two lawsuits in Federal Court alleging false infringement accusations. Retraction Watch is fighting a disgruntled scientist who copied part of the website then claimed it as his own and sent a DMCA takedown notice against it. Another involves a journalist who published a press release from Straight Pride UK, which then sent a DMCA notice to WordPress to take down the post. Read more at eff.org.

  10. New Jersey is testing online gambling. The system would require people to be within the state to play using geolocation. According to the Associated Press, people testing the system have found it troublesome since the geolocation function wasn't working properly. New Jersey is expected to fully launch online gambling next week with 14 websites. Read more at bcc.co.uk.

For insight, analysis, and discussion of these topics and more, check out Tech News Today for November 22, 2013.