Archive for December 30th, 2010

December 30, 2010

>Nokia shipped 4 million units of N8 ?

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An Unofficial report says that Nokia has managed to ship close to 4 million units of the N8 smartphone since launch according to Finnish research firm Inderes. They are estimating the shipments at 3.5 – 4 mn units
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December 30, 2010

>Choose a Movie’s Plot — While You Watch It !!

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Utilizing complicated video coding procedures, the new format provides smooth interaction and transition between scenes as audience members watch — and determine the plot of — Turbulence, created by Prof. Nitzan Ben Shaul of Tel Aviv University’s Department of Film and Television. Made with his unique scene-sequencing technique, Turbulence recently won a prize at the Berkeley Video and Film Festival for its technological innovation.
“The film gives people the suspense and thrill of multiple outcomes like those of the films Sliding Doors or Run Lola Run, but it also gives them the power to really choose and influence at a number of key points how the plot of the movie will proceed,” says Prof. Ben Shaul. Curious viewers can backtrack, too — they can go back to a narrative crossroads to see what might have been, never seeing the same ending twice.
Using Prof. Ben Shaul’s innovative format, the viewer watches the film on a regular or a touch-screen monitor, and an iridescent glow appears on certain “action items” at pivotal plot moments. The viewer can choose whether or not to interact. Should Sol send the text message? If the viewer thinks so, he clicks or touches the screen and activates the cell phone held by the actor.
Turbulence comes with an attractive plot, however it’s played out. Three Israeli friends, Edi, Sol and Rona, meet by chance in Manhattan. Twenty years in the past, a protest over the Lebanon War led to an arrest, and the three friends went separate ways. Now, in present-day New York, they say goodbye to the past and two of the characters rekindle a love affair.
How will it end? You decide. Without any viewer interactions, it lasts 83 minutes; with interactions it varies from one hour to two. Whatever choice the viewer makes, Prof. Ben Shaul says, the end leads to closure and viewer satisfaction.
“Sliding Doors and Run Lola Run inspired me. They make you think about options in life, but they don’t let you experience what responsibility feels like at crucial decision points,” says Prof. Ben Shaul. “In our film you decide where the character should go, and you can decide to return to the point where the plot flipped. It’s gripping.”
unded by the Tel Aviv University Technology and Science Committee, the movie is perfect for new touch-screen technologies like iPads or personal airplane movie players. But the movie can also be seen in groups. An individual can be chosen to make the choices, or majority vote can rule.
“It develops optional thinking and can change the way people consume media and advertisements,” says Prof. Ben Shaul, who received his Ph.D. from the Cinema Studies Department at New York University.
He hopes to inspire a whole new paradigm of filmmaking and is currently writing a book with the working title What If: Optional Thinking and Narrative Movies.
Thanks to ScienceDaily
December 30, 2010

>China steps up crackdown on Internet phone services

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China has pledged to restrict Internet phone services — a move that could affect thousands of businesses and individuals making cheap calls via web-based communications companies such as Skype.”We are carrying out with relevant authorities a campaign to crack down on illegal Voice over Internet Protocol phone services”,
 the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology said in a circular posted online earlier this month.In the brief notice, which did not offer details on the crackdown or a timetable for shutting down ‘illegal’ services, the ministry listed a telephone hotline for citizens to report any violations.The ministry declined to comment immediately when asked for clarification of the policy by AFP on Thursday.
December 30, 2010

>SurfCube Browser brings 3D browsing to Windows Phone 7

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SurfCube Browser by Kinabalu Innovation Limited is a brand new 3D browser for Windows Phone 7 devices. 
To be clear, the interface of this great Web browser features a 3D cube effect. The browsing itself, however, is still done in a standard 2D interface. SurfCube sports a nifty UI that positions various browser functions on five sides of a virtual cube. At its center, the cube features a standard Web page viewer. Above the center pane is the favorites list and a URL bar, and below it is a tab view that is still under development. To the left of the Web page viewer is the browser’s history view and to the right, the settings panel. We tested the app and while it does take a bit of getting used to, the interface goes well beyond novelty to provide a useful and attractive browser interface we’ve grown to really enjoy. SurfCube Browser is available immediately in the Windows Phone 7 Marketplace for $1.99. A fully functional trial is available as well, which allows the browser to be opened 20 times for free before users are required to purchase the app. Hit the break for a video of SurfCube Browser in action and follow the read link to download the trial or make a purchase.
December 30, 2010

>Skype Video on Apple Devices

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“The latest version of Skype’s app lets users of the iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch make video calls, which will expand mobile videoconferencing globally—and strain network capacities”.

Skype Technology SA, the biggest provider of international calls, introduced video calling for Apple Inc.’s wireless devices, a move that may broaden the appeal of mobile videoconferencing.The newest version of Skype’s application lets users of the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch make or receive video calls via 3G or Wi-Fi connections, the company said today in a statement.The company had previously offered its free mobile video-call app only for Nokia Oyj’s N900 smartphone. Luxembourg-based Skype is seeking to increase the number of subscribers who may eventually buy its premium services. The new app will compete with existing iPhone and iPod calling services offered by Apple, Fringland Ltd. and Tango.