Technology

Smart Spreadsheet Service Blockspring Raises $3.4 Million

TechCrunch - 26 min 10 sec ago
 Blockspring, a service that connects to spreadsheets like Excel and Google Spreadsheets to easier import data, said it has raised $3.4 million. Instead of having to write specific code to import and sort data in a spreadsheet, Blockspring has several connections to services like Google Search that will automatically populate spreadsheets with data. The company plans to release several… Read More

Nintendo sells 10 million Wii Us, still not making much money

Engadget - 1 hour 6 min ago
Nintendo has posted yet another slim profit as it moves beyond the financial difficulties of the past few years. The slow launch of the Wii U and the stagnation of its handheld sales caused Nintendo to fall dramatically from grace after the runaway s...

Little, A Hyperlocal Deals Service For India, Launches With $50M In Funding

TechCrunch - 1 hour 18 min ago
 A collection of India’s top entrepreneurs are pooling their resources to a launch a new marketplace that connects consumers with physical retailers via their smartphone. Read More

Rakuten Opens New Research Centers In Boston And Singapore

TechCrunch - 1 hour 25 min ago
 Rakuten, Japan’s largest e-commerce company, has opened two new branches of its research center in Boston and Singapore. Called the Rakuten Institute of Technology, the organization already has branches in New York, Tokyo, and Paris that not only support the company’s research and development, but also its efforts at worldwide expansion. Read More

The latest 'King's Quest' adventure starts today

Engadget - 1 hour 46 min ago
In case Shenmue 3 and a Castlevania spiritual successor were a bit too recent and console-centric for your nostalgia kick, maybe the new King's Quest will tickle your fancy. The hand-painted adventure game's first episode is out today across a wide s...

A Computer Umpires Its First Pro Baseball Game

Slashdot - 2 hours 15 min ago
An anonymous reader writes: Baseball has long been regarded as a "game of inches." Among the major professional sports it arguably requires the greatest amount of precision — a few extra RPMs can turn a decent curveball into an unhittable one, and a single degree's difference in the arc of a bat swing can change a lazy popup into a home run. As sensor technology has improved, it's been odd to see how pro baseball leagues have made great efforts to keep it away from the sport. Even if you aren't a fan of the game, you're probably familiar with the cultural meme of an umpire blowing a key call and altering the course of the game. Thus, it's significant that for the first time ever, sensors and a computer have called balls and strikes for a professional game. In a minor league game between the San Rafael Pacifics and the Vallejo Admirals, a three-camera system tracked the baseball's exact position as it crossed home plate, and a computer judged whether it was in the strike zone or not. The game went without incident, and it provided valuable data in a real-life example. The pitch-tracking system still has bugs to work out, though. Dan Brooks, founder of a site that tracks ball/strike accuracy for real umpires, said that for the new system to be implemented permanently, fans must be "willing to accept a much smaller amount of inexplicable error in exchange for a larger amount of explicable error."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

UK lawsuit may force Uber to treat drivers as employees

Engadget - 2 hours 28 min ago
Should Uber drivers be classified as employees or independent contractors? The ride-hailing company has always leaned towards the latter, because it means it can avoid paying potentially expensive staff benefits, insurance and expenses. However, a Ca...

LG made 1.2 cents in profit for every phone it sold last quarter

Engadget - 3 hours 16 min ago
LG's latest earnings report shows just how tough the smartphone market is getting. On the one hand, LG Mobile shipped 8.1 million LTE smartphones, its best result ever. On the other hand, it sold fewer premium models in Korea and spent a lot of money...

Alibaba Plows $1B Into Aliyun, Its Cloud Computing Unit

TechCrunch - 3 hours 18 min ago
 Alibaba Group announced today that it will invest a further $1 billion into Aliyun, its cloud computing unit. The capital will be used to expand Aliyun, which currently has data centers in China, Hong Kong, and Silicon Valley, into other international markets. Read More

Interview: Duane Jackson Talks Prison Life To Startup Life, And His Multimillion Pound Exit

TechCrunch - 3 hours 25 min ago
 Duane Jackson’s story is both unusual and inspiring — a story he tells with refreshing candour in his recently-released autobiography ‘Four Thousands Days, My Journey From Prison To Business Success’. During an interview we discuss Jackson’s conviction for drug trafficking, the transition from prison life to startup life, why he shunned VC money, and… Read More

LG Posts Slim $206M Profit In Q2 2015 As Smartphone Shipments Slip To 14.1M

TechCrunch - 3 hours 54 min ago
 Korea’s LG shipped a (then) record 14.5 million smartphones in the second quarter of 2014, but now, one year later, the company isn’t finding growth so simply. The firm just revealed its Q2 2015 financials and, while not as disastrously as HTC, the company itself describes them as “modest.” Read More

Lending Platform China Rapid Finance Raises $35M Series C At A $1B Valuation

TechCrunch - 4 hours 14 min ago
 China Rapid Finance, which claims to be the country’s largest online consumer lending marketplace, has closed a $35 million Series C led by Broadline Capital. The round pegs the company’s pre-money valuation of $1 billion. China Rapid Finance is reportedly gearing up for an initial public offering in the U.S. Read More

Microsoft now rolling out free Windows 10 upgrades

Engadget - 4 hours 46 min ago
Today's the day! Windows 10 is now available in 190 countries as a free upgrade to Windows 7 or 8.1 owners. Replacing an OS is no one's idea of fun, but we're actually looking forward to this one. First off, we'll be leaving behind the most hated ver...

UK Campaign Wants 18-Year-Olds To Be Able To Delete Embarrassing Online Past

Slashdot - 5 hours 19 min ago
An anonymous reader writes: People should be allowed to delete embarrassing social media posts when they reach adulthood, UK internet rights campaigners are urging. The iRights coalition has set out five rights which young people should expect online, including being able to easily edit or delete content they have created, and to know who is holding or profiting from their information. Highlighting how campaigners believe adults should not have to bear the shame of past immaturity, iRights also wants children to be protected from illegal or distressing pages; to be digitally literate; and be able to make informed and conscious choices.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

This Netherlands bank lets you use your voice as your password

Engadget - 5 hours 57 min ago
Online banking is usually an exercise in remembering complicated pin numbers or passwords -- but what if there was an easier way? In the Netherlands, there is: banking customers who use the ING Netherlands app can now long into their bank account, ch...

Golden Gate Ventures Unwraps $50M Fund For Southeast Asia

TechCrunch - 6 hours 32 min ago
 There’s a new startup fund in Southeast Asia. Singapore-based Golden Gate Ventures announced a new $50 million to support startups in the region and international companies expanding into Southeast Asia. Read More

Japanese scientists fire the world's most powerful laser

Engadget - 6 hours 52 min ago
A team of researchers from Osaka University recently fired the most powerful laser on the planet: a 2 petawatt pulse, that's 2 quadrillion watts, albeit for just one trillionth of a second. It's called the LFEX (Laser for Fast Ignition Experiments) a...

Google Straps Aclima Sensors To Street View Cars To Map Air Pollution

TechCrunch - 7 hours 11 min ago
 If a city knows what intersections are full of smog, it could add trees or change stop light schedules to improve the air its citizens breathe. Google Earth’s Outreach program that equips non-profits and public-benefit organizations with data wants to give the world these insights. So today, Google revealed that it’s been working with SF startup Aclima for the last year and a half… Read More

NVIDIA Tegra X1 Performance Exceeds Intel Bay Trail SoCs, AMD AM1 APUs

Slashdot - 7 hours 20 min ago
An anonymous reader writes: A NVIDIA SHIELD Android TV modified to run Ubuntu Linux is providing interesting data on how NVIDIA's latest "Tegra X1" 64-bit ARM big.LITTLE SoC compares to various Intel/AMD/MIPS systems of varying form factors. Tegra X1 benchmarks on Ubuntu show strong performance with the X1 SoC in this $200 Android TV device, beating out low-power Intel Atom/Celeron Bay Trail SoCs, AMD AM1 APUs, and in some workloads is even getting close to an Intel Core i3 "Broadwell" NUC. The Tegra X1 features Maxwell "GM20B" graphics and the total power consumption is less than 10 Watts.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

This Arduino Basic Kit has everything a newbie maker could ask for

Engadget - Tue, 07/28/2015 - 11:31pm
It's easy to think about tinkering around with Arduino, but take more than 30 seconds to look at the platform, and suddenly it becomes daunting: not only do you need an Arduino itself, but to get started you need resisters, wires, LEDs, screens and a...