News Fuse for September 17, 2013

Valve

Here are today's top 10 stories from Tech News Today for September 17, 2013:

  1. Valve Co-founder Gabe Newell gave a keynote speech at LinuxCon touting Linux as the future of gaming. Newell pointed out that 198 games now run on Linux since the spring launch of Steam for Linux. He also extolled the speed at which development can happen in an open environment. And right at the end he hinted that Valve's approach to hardware for Steam as well as some news on mobile, will be coming next week. Steam box!!! Read more at theverge.com.

  2. The 16GB model of the Nexus 4 sold out on the Google Play online store yesterday, and last week it sold out of the 8GB model following a $100 price drop. And now The Verge has a source that says Google has no plans to restock and continue offering the phone. This along with a mystery device showing up in a Google promotional video and an FCC filing from Google all point to a Nexus 5 in the near future. Read more at gigaom.com.

  3. Sarah, you're an Apple TV-having, cord cutter. You might like this story. Amazon just updated its Instant Video app for iOS and it finally supports AirPlay video streaming. In the past, the app's AirPlay functionality was limited to audio only. Amazon also says the updated app is faster, too. Read more at theverge.com.

  4. Apple's iOS7 will become available Wednesday September 18th. Older version of hardware like the iPhone 3GS and original iPad won't be able to take advantage. But Apple's not ignoring them in the app store. If a user running an older version of iOS tries to download a version of an app that wouldn't work, the OS will ask the user if they would like to download the latest compatible version. The prompt was discovered by a Reddit user who tried to install Instagram on a 2nd-gen iPod Touch. Read more at reddit.com.

  5. Microsoft's Bing search engine is sporting a new logo! But it made some changes to search, too - with improved "Snapshot" cards that try to guess what you want to know, gives a quick index of info, but it also pulls from Facebook and Twitter to see what your friends might be saying about it. The "Page Zero" results that auto-fill even as you search a query now have mini-tiles with pictures and text. Other tweaks like "Pole Position" results now fill in answers for easy questions about things like the weather. Read more at engadget.com.

  6. Google has a baby bump -- no wait, I read that wrong. Google has bought the company Bump. The Bump app allowed users to share files and contact info by tapping devices together without the need of NFC. Speaking of NFC, Google just updated its Google Wallet app to support any Android device running 2.3 and higher and does away with needing NFC support. The app will let users send money for free to other U.S.-based users via an email address similar to PayPal. Read more at techcrunch.com.

  7. Dell knows the way to your laptop love is through big battery life. And cheap prices. The new $379 Haswell version of the Inspiron 11 3000 series of laptops lasts up to eight hours on a single charge. It's also still light and thin at 3.15 pounds and .83 inches thick with an 11.6-inch touch-enabled display. The Inspiron 11 3000 series will be available October 3rd. Read more at theverge.com.

  8. Iranian citizens briefly had access to Twitter and Facebook -- services that have been officially banned in the country since 2009. So what happened? One communications official called the whole episode an ISP "technical failure". But others say it could be a result of pro-internet moderates like Iran's new president, Hassan Rouhani pushing back against the wishes of more conservatives within Iranian government. The communication official's response to the glitch? "We will take action if there was a human flaw. We are probing it." Read more at engadget.com.

  9. Internet.org, the organization begun by Facebook to make the Internet accessible and affordable for everyone, released a whitepaper Tuesday detailing changes that need to happen in spectrum usage to accommodate 1000 times more Web traffic as the 5 billion people currently not connected come online. The paper details technologies to deliver and handle huge volumes of data generated by a billion plus users daily. with names like Air Traffic Control, HipHop and WebP. Read more at techcrunch.com.

  10. According to the Washington Post, the country of Brazil is planning to separate itself from the U.S.-centric Internet due to reports of U.S. government surveillance. Brazil would still allow its citizens to view and use U.S. services, but the country "wants their data to be stored locally" to prevent the NSA from spying. This is leading experts to voice concerns that the Internet could be fractured should countries wall themselves off. Read more at washingtonpost.com.

For insight, analysis, and discussion of these topics and more, check out Tech News Today for September 17, 2013.