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Apple's Patent-Pending Passbook Updates Could Transform Shopping

December 24, 2012 9:15 am | Comments

A newly discovered patent application hints that Apple is planning to update its  Passbook digital-coupon storage app with Near-Field Communication (NFC) technology. This means future iPhone and iPod touch products may come with location-based technology that displays relevant coupons and gift cards as soon as you're near a store.

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How Ex-RIM Employees Are Fueling Ontario's Startup Scene

December 24, 2012 9:13 am | Comments

Research in Motion , maker of the once-treasured but now beleaguered BlackBerry , is in trouble. RIM cut 5,000 jobs -- 30% of its workforce -- this past summer. Its most recent earnings report beat expectations but still isn't much to celebrate, as subscriber numbers are down and the report shows nearly a 50% drop off in sales since the same quarter last year.

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Harvard Scientist Proposes Refreezing Arctic to Prevent Global-Warming Disaster

December 24, 2012 8:58 am | Comments

Harvard University geoengineer and environmental scientist David Keith has a "plan B" in case of an environmental emergency. Keith's unusual proposal is this: Force reflective particles into the Earth's upper atmosphere -- the stratosphere -- to reverse global warming. "One approach is to disperse particulates at high altitude to reduce the effective solar ?ux entering the atmosphere," Keith and his fellow researchers report in the  " target="_blank" style="color: #0c74a6; text-decoration: none;">Nature Climate Change  journal and  " target="_blank" style="color: #0c74a6; text-decoration: none;">Environmental Research Letters .

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Next iPad Rumored to Have iPad Mini Design Elements

December 24, 2012 8:56 am | Comments

Apple is preparing to launch a new iPad in March 2013, claims Japanese blog Macotakara , citing an "inside source". This new iPad will be thinner and lighter than the current one, with iPad mini design elements, the " target="_blank" style="color: #0c74a6; text-decoration: none;">report claims . The upcoming iPad will reportedly trim 4mm in height, 17mm in width and 2mm in depth from the current one.

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Boeing Creates 360° 'Dream Pass' Video of its 787 Dreamliner

December 21, 2012 5:52 am | Comments

Attention wannabe pilots: Here's your chance to experience the next best thing to flying Boeing's new 787 Dreamliner. The company created the Boeing 787 Dreamliner " Dream Pass ," a 360-degree online video that lets you take an immersive virtual ride in the plane's flight deck, and tour its wings and engines.

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HTC Reportedly Planning to Launch Two Windows RT Tablets

December 21, 2012 5:38 am | Comments

HTC has two Windows RT-based tablets in the works, Bloomberg reports citing people familiar with the matter. One of these will be a full-fledged 12-inch tablet, while the other is a crossover, 7-inch device that will be able to make phone calls, the report claims . If the report is true, the 7-inch device would be the first tablet of that size for Windows RT.

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New COPPA Rules Will Allow Facebook to Advertise to Children

December 19, 2012 9:08 am | Comments

The Children's Online Privacy Protection Act, or COPPA, is the set of rules protecting the privacy of all Internet users younger than 13. COPPA's rules have mostly stayed the same since 2000, but the Internet has evolved significantly since then -- the rise of the social and mobile web, for instance, largely occurred after COPPA was first written.

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Major Breakthrough in High-Precision Indoor Positioning

December 19, 2012 6:12 am | Comments

Cell phones are becoming ever smarter, savvy enough to tell police officers where to go to find a missing person or recommend a rescue team where they should search for survivors when fire erupts in tall buildings. Although still in its nascent stages, indoor positioning system will soon be an available feature on mobile phones.

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Snapkeys Is a New Take on the Virtual Keyboard

December 19, 2012 5:57 am | Comments

Snapkeys, a whole new take on the virtual keyboard, officially launched in beta Tuesday. Rather than use the traditional QWERTY layout for keys on the screen of your Android phone or tablet, Snapkeys instead uses four virtual buttons on the screen, each providing access to three different letters.

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Instagram Vows: We Won't Use Your Photos in Ads

December 19, 2012 5:52 am | Comments

Instagram co-founder Kevin Systrom vowed Tuesday to remove language from the service's privacy policy that seemed to say Instagram was going to allow user pictures to be employed in advertising. "The language we proposed ... raised questions about whether your photos can be part of an advertisement," Systrom wrote in a blog post entitled " Thank you and we're listening .

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GM to Unveil Cadillac ELR Electric Coupe Next Month

December 19, 2012 5:47 am | Comments

General Motors will unveil its 2014 Cadillac ELR electric coupe on Jan. 15 at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, the company announced Tuesday. Aside from the car being "design driven" and "electrically powered," Cadillac did not reveal many details about the coupe. According to Autoblog , however, the ELR was tested with the same range-extended electric drive system as the Chevy Volt .

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FCC Launches Tool to Ward Off Mobile Security Threats

December 19, 2012 5:45 am | Comments

Someone in the U.S. loses their cellphone every 3.5 seconds, which adds up to more than $30 billion in losses each year. Not to mention the losses associated with mobile security theft, password hacks and so on. To help consumers protect mobile devices and ward off security threats, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is stepping in with a new tool called the " Smartphone Security Checker .

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Is the US Health Care System a Target for Cyberterrorism?

December 18, 2012 10:06 am | Comments

The health care system in the U.S. is a $2.5 trillion industry and depends heavily on communication and the transfer of information via the Internet. This puts it at ever-increasing risk of a cyberterrorism attack, which could jeopardize lives and threaten patient care and privacy. Cyber threats are on the rise, and U.

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Small, Portable Sensors Allow Users to Monitor Exposure to Pollution on Their Smart Phones

December 18, 2012 9:58 am | Comments

Computer scientists at the University of California, San Diego have built a small fleet of portable pollution sensors that allow users to monitor air quality in real time on their smart phones. The sensors could be particularly useful to people suffering from chronic conditions, such as asthma, who need to avoid exposure to pollutants.

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Strokes of Genius

December 18, 2012 9:16 am | Comments

Fourteen U.S. Olympians trained with it prior to this summer’s London games. College swim teams from coast to coast (Harvard, USC, Michigan, Northwestern University, and the U.S. Naval Academy, to name a few) have added it to their training arsenal. The first high school team to embrace the technology won its state championship, and numerous other high school programs now use it.

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