Mother's Day is Almost Here (Sunday, May 11th); Gift Ideas from TransformerForums.com

May 05, 2014 - 10:46 AM - by dgstorm

Mother's Day is almost upon us. It's one simple day of the year when we get a chance to celebrate and/or give thanks for one of the most important people in our lives. She gave birth to us, clothed us, fed us, wiped our faces and our butts, worried when we were sick, showered us with love and affection and much much more. It's an easy thing to do to come up with a card and/or a gift for her compared to all of that.

To that end, we thought it would be handy to share a few links to online retailers to make it super-easy for our members to share their appreciation for their Mom. Here are several links to retailers with gift offers and a few generous discounts to get you started:

  • 1-800-Flowers - Special Offer = Save 20% on orders over $49.99 with MDAY49 or save 15% on select items with MTHR15. Valid until 5/12
  • Groupon - No specific special offer since Groupon itself is the special offer.
  • Target - Special Offer = Save 20% on Women’s Heels and Flats, and Buy One, Get One 50% off Jewelry & Accessories. Valid 5/4-5/10
  • Walmart - Special Offers depend on the product or individual sale - see online site for more details.
  • Zappos - Special Offers depend on the product or individual sale - see online site for more details.
  • bergdorfgoodman.com - Save up to 40% off 5F Contemporary read-to-wear at Bergdorf Goodman! Free Shipping and Returns, every day. Feel free to indulge! Valid until 5/7
  • Best Buy - Special Offers depend on the product or individual sale - see online site for more details.

Some of these deals are only good for a limited window of time, so you may want to check them out ASAP. Make it a Happy Mother's Day!!!
  0 Replies | 1,377 Views


Apple Scores Hollow Victory Over Samsung in Retrial; New Damages are Just $120Million

May 05, 2014 - 9:21 AM - by dgstorm

The retrial court case between Apple and Samsung concluded last Friday (May 2), with Apple pulling out the win. It turns out their ultimate victory was pathetic compared to the last time though. The jury awarded Apple with only $120 Million dollars in damages compared to the nearly $1 Billion from the first trial over patent disputes. What's particularly weak about this victory is that the damages awarded will barely cover the legal costs Apple incurred while fighting to achieve this victory. Here's a quote explaining this further,

“It is hard to view this outcome as much of a victory for Apple,” Brian Love, an assistant professor at the Santa Clara University School of Law, said in an e-mail. The amount of damages “probably doesn’t surpass by too much the amount Apple spent litigating this case,” he said.

The jury rejected Apple’s claim on the patent it counted as the most valuable of the group, one that enables updating of applications while other features of the phone are in use. Apple also lost its claim over a patent that allows a user to perform a “universal” search for information with a single click.
There's more that makes Apple's victory particularly hollow though. While the jury found that Samsung had infringed upon two of four Apple patents, the jury also found that Apple infringed on one of two Samsung patents. This basically means that one side stole "more" than the other, but how can you really say that someone is more of a thief? You either are a thief or you aren't. This isn't good for the reputation of either company (although realistically it will probably amount to nothing in the public's eye.)

During the trial, Apple made an "absurd" request regarding the patent damages amount they asked for, which obviously didn't pan out. Here's a quote with the details,

Apple wanted Samsung to pay as much as $40 for each phone sold that uses infringing technology, for a total of $2.19 billion. Samsung argued that the jury should award no more than $38.4 million for any infringement damages.

From the start, Samsung cast the iPhone maker’s case as a bid to displace Google as the leading supplier of smartphone operating systems and limit consumer choice.

The verdict “doesn’t slow down Samsung at all” because the implied royalty rate is so low that Samsung doesn’t need to worry about paying it, said Kevin Rivette, a 3LP Advisors LLC partner. “It was absurd for Apple to ask for $2 billion. That was a case of ‘Am I going to laugh now or laugh later?’”

Apple might have considered the trial a win if the verdict amounted to more than $10 per phone, Rivette said.
The next step will be for both companies to order sales bans of the offending devices, and... [Read More]
  0 Replies | 1,836 Views


7-Inch Asus K01A Tablet Passes Through FCC Testing

Apr 28, 2014 - 10:37 AM - by dgstorm

It looks like Asus is prepping a new budget-friendly 7-inch Android tablet. A device with the model Asus K01A just passed through its FCC testing. It's spec-list seems pretty mediocre, which is why we are sticking it in the "affordable" category.

Here's what the FCC filing revealed,

  • Wi-Fi
  • GPS
  • Bluetooth 4.0 LE support
  • 7-inch screen with 1024 x 600 resolution.
  • 4GB Storage
  • A microSD card slot
  • A front and rear camera (unknown MP)
  • Unknown SoC
  • 3200mAh battery

It's actually not clear at this time which OS is on the device, so it's mostly an educated guess that it will come with Android. If this thing is ultra-affordable (as in less than $75 bucks), then we might see a point for it. As it stands, it has us scratching our head as to why Asus feels it needs another low-end tablet in the market. We would rather see hints of the next generation T-Prime tablet.

Source: PhoneArena
  0 Replies | 1,635 Views


ARM Exec Says 64-Bit Android Phones Coming by Christmas

Apr 24, 2014 - 10:02 AM - by dgstorm

Tom Lantzsch, ARM's executive vice president of corporate strategy, recently had some intriguing predictions to share. He believes we will see 64-bit Android smartphones coming to market by Christmas of this year. Lantzsch points out that even if Google doesn't provide a 64-bit version of Android by that time, existing 32-bit code will still run more efficiently on the 64-bit architecture.

Lantzsch shared,

"The architecture itself allows for more efficiency in the code. So, that means better battery life, quicker responsiveness, better features. There will be early adopters. The applications with the most need will certainly go first. And then the rest will come over time."
In reference to the heightened pace of bringing 64-bit to the mobile market, he added,

"Certainly, we've had big uptick in demand for mobile 64-bit products. We've seen this with our [Cortex] A53, a high-performance 64-bit mobile processor...we've been surprised at the pace that [64-bit] is now becoming mobile centric. Qualcomm, MediaTek, and Marvell are examples of public 64-bit disclosures."
It seems that when Apple dropped the bomb-shell of a 64-bit processor coming in the iPhone 5S, it spurred the industry to leap forward. It's amazing how quickly mobile technology has evolved compared to PC technology. While mobile tech is still a few years behind current PC tech, the pace at which mobile tech has progressed easily exceeds how long it took for PCs to advance. This is especially true when you compare how quickly the two industries moved to 64-bit computing.

Of course, you can't have one without the other, so it's only because of PCs that mobile even exists, so you could easily argue that mobile devices are just the natural evolution of PCs. Share your perspective.

Source: CNET
  2 Replies | 1,950 Views


Baldur's Gate Enhanced Edition Finally Available for Android; Google Play Store $9.99

Apr 18, 2014 - 10:23 AM - by dgstorm

Do you ever miss the days of classic RPGs on the PC? Do you have fond memories of the Baldur's Gate series from Black Isle Studios and wish you could relive some of that gaming magic? Even if you haven't played the Baldur's Gate D&D games on the PC, if you are a fan of that style of fantasy gaming, then you owe it to yourself to check out the newest thing to come to Android. Baldur's Gate Enhanced Edition is now available for Android and can be found on the Google Play Store for $9.99. The price is a bit steep compared to the typical app/game for Android, but that price is really a bargain for the 100+ hours (including sidequests) of fun you will get from this immense and enjoyable game.

This isn't just a straight port of the game either. The "Enhanced Edition" moniker serves it well. Free-roam zooming, high-resolution fonts, and other UI tweaks breathe fresh life into the 16 year old game. On top of that, the Baldur's Gate Enhanced Edition includes the two expansion packs (Tales of the Sword Coast and The Black Pits) built-in, and there is new content (some of which requires in-app purchase). Even if you never try out any of this extra paid content, you will be hard pressed to find a more enjoyable RPG experience on Android.


Here's a quote from the Google Play Store with a full game description,

The dawn is especially cruel this morning...
For as long as you can remember, your view of the world has been limited to the heavily fortified walls of Candlekeep. Your foster father, Gorion, has done everything in his power to protect you and keep you out of harm’s way.

All of that is about to change. Forced to leave your home under mysterious circumstances, you find yourself drawn into a conflict that has the Sword Coast on the brink of war. An iron shortage of unknown origin threatens to plunge the city of Baldur’s Gate into conflict with Amn. Meanwhile, there is something else at work, far more sinister than you can even begin to fathom...

Since its release in 1998, this classic saga of mystery, intrigue, and adventure has set the standard for Dungeons & Dragons™ computer roleplaying games. Customize your hero’s traits and abilities, recruit a party of brave allies, and explore the far corners of the Sword Coast in your search for adventure, profit… and the truth.

Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition contains the original 60-hour epic, as well as the following expansions:
* Tales of the Sword Coast: Explore the fabled Durlag’s Tower and more locations from the original Baldur’s Gate expansion.
* The Black Pits: You have been captured and forced to fight in Baeloth’s marvelous arena. A myriad of monsters await, as well as countless other adventurers who face the same fate. Maim, murder, and maul your way to freedom… if you can!
* Discover countless improvements we’ve made to the original game, including
... [Read More]
  1 Reply | 2,553 Views


Google Reveals They Are Planning Continuous Malware Monitoring for Android

Apr 10, 2014 - 1:54 PM - by dgstorm

Leave it up to the folks at Google to take Android to the next level for reliability and security. Google just announced their plans to extend their security services beyond Google Play and create a system for real-time continuous malware monitoring for Android. They will be evolving their "verify apps" service to take on the worthy task of finding and eliminating malware before you ever have to worry about it. Here's a quote from the Google blog with more of the details,

Think about the ways your home is kept secure. You rely on structural security features—secure locks, a rock-hard foundation, strong windows and doors. You might also have an alarm or video camera to give you an extra layer of security, with a support team behind those tools making them more powerful, all but invisible until the moment you need them.

We have a similar approach to how we deliver security improvements in Android. As part of Android’s foundation, we built safeguards like application sandboxing, which confines apps, minimizing their ability to damage other parts of your phone. But just like your home, Google offers a built-in “service layer” (kind of like the phone equivalent of that alarm service for your home) to most every Android phone and tablet that’s constantly being strengthened, and it’s included for free. We’re adding to that service layer, further fortifying your Android phone or tablet.

Verify apps: now protecting you continually
Building on Verify apps, which already protects people when they’re installing apps outside of Google Play at the time of installation, we’re rolling out a new enhancement which will now continually check devices to make sure that all apps are behaving in a safe manner, even after installation. In the last year, the foundation of this service—Verify apps—has been used more than 4 billion times to check apps at the time of install. This enhancement will take that protection even further, using Android’s powerful app scanning system developed by the Android security and Safe Browsing teams.


Because potentially harmful applications are very rare, most people will never see a warning or any other indication that they have this additional layer of protection. But we do expect a small number of people to see warnings (which look similar to the existing Verify apps warnings) as a result of this new capability. The good news is that very few people have ever encountered this; in fact, we’ve found that fewer than 0.18% of installs in the last year occurred after someone received a warning that the app was potentially harmful.

Even though the risk is miniscule, we’re committed to making sure that the best available security protections are available to all Android users. This includes service-based protections such as Verify apps, as well as security features within the platform itself.
Source: Android... [Read More]
  0 Replies | 2,733 Views


Prototype Nano-Tech Charger Can Fully Recharge Your Cell Battery in Under a Minute

Apr 07, 2014 - 3:19 PM - by dgstorm

Although it sounds like something out of Shadowrun novel, there is some new tech on the horizon which could make our worries about smart-device battery drain a thing of the past. An Israeli company named StoreDot just showed off a high-tech new prototype battery charger at Microsoft's Think Next event. This new battery charger utilizes Nanodots technology, which is essentially some of the newest nano-tech available.

Nanodots are bio-organic nanocrystals with superior energy storage capabilities, although commercial applications for them could eventually be seen in data storage, flexible displays, and imaging sensors. In this particular application...

Continue Reading @: Prototype Nano-Tech Charger Can Fully Recharge Your Cell Battery in Under a Minute
  0 Replies | 1,880 Views


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