Thursday, June 30, 2016

Apple to Drop Thunderbolt Monitor

Apple to Drop Thunderbolt Monitor: 4K or 5K Replacement Coming?

The company is ditching its Thunderbolt display as soon as the current stock sells out, according to reports. What will replace it?
Apple is ending production of its own 27-inch Thunderbolt computer displays, and the product will be phased out as soon as its current inventory runs out, which will soon leave the company without a monitor in its product lineup.The demise of the Thunderbolt external monitor, however, could mean that Apple is preparing to announce a new 4K or 5K Retina replacement model that would better match its high-end computer models that already feature 4K capabilities, according to a June 23 story by The Verge.The Thunderbolt display, which retails for $999 and has been available from Apple since July 2011, is a thin-film transistor (TFT) active-matrix LCD display with 2560 by 1440p resolution.An Apple spokesperson told The Verge that the company is "discontinuing the Apple Thunderbolt Display," though it "will be available through, Apple's retail stores and Apple Authorized Resellers while supplies last," the article reported. "There are a number of great third-party options available for Mac users," the spokesman added.
Apple's dropping the Thunderbolt will likely stir up speculation in the marketplace about what new display or displays the company will announce to take its place.
In April, Apple announced a round of key improvements in some of its MacBook models, including the latest Intel Core M processors, faster graphics performance and flash storage, and as much as an additional hour of battery life. The updates, which also for the first time include a Rose Gold finish on a MacBook, were reported in an earlier eWEEK story.The latest MacBooks now feature sixth-generation dual-core Intel Core M processors with up to 1.3GHz speeds and faster 1,866MHz memory, as well as new Intel HD Graphics 515 graphics processing units that deliver up to 25 percent faster graphics performance. Faster PCIe-based flash storage also added improved performance, while improvements in battery life now provide up to 10 hours of Web browsing and up to 11 hours of movie playback per charge. In addition, all 13-inch MacBook Air computers get an increased 8GB of memory standard from Apple.The MacBook continues to feature an all-metal unibody case, a 12-inch Retina display, a full-size keyboard, a Force Touch trackpad and a USB-C port. The machine weighs 2 pounds and is 0.51 inches thick. It comes in gold, silver, Space Gray and the new Rose Gold. The MacBook also has built-in 802.11ac WiFi and Bluetooth 4.0 for connectivity on the go.A MacBook that comes with a 1.1GHz dual-core Intel Core m3 processor, 8GB of memory and 256GB of flash storage retails for $1,299, while a machine with a 1.2GHz dual-core Intel Core m5 processor, 8GB of memory and 512GB of flash storage retails for $1,599.In March, Apple unveiled its latest iPhone, the smaller iPhone SE, as well as a smaller iPad Pro machine. The iPhone SE has a 4-inch display, a 12-megapixel camera, an improved battery, Apple's latest 64-bit A9 processor and an M9 motion coprocessor. The new phone replaces the iPhone 5s, which debuted in September 2013. The iPhone SE is the first iPhone that can shoot and capture 4K video, according to an earlier eWEEK story. It is priced at $399.99 for a 16GB model or $499.99 for a 32GB version.The new smaller 9.7-inch iPad Pro includes a 64-bit A9 chip, wide-color Retina display, four-speaker audio, 4K video, a 12-megapixel iSight camera, Retina flash and iOS 9.3. It is priced at $729.99 for a 32GB tablet or $879.99 for a 128GB model.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Tesla's bid for Solar City

Tesla Motors Inc. (TSLA) shares plunged over 12% in after-market trading today after the automaker announced its offer, via a blog post, to acquire beleaguered solar panel manufacturer SolarCity Corp. (SCTY). Subject to SolarCity shareholder approval, Tesla’s proposal involves a straightforward stock swap of .122x to .131x shares of Tesla common for each share of SolarCity common, valuing the deal at around $2.8 billion, or $26.50-$28.50 per SCTY share.
Moreover, Elon Musk, who is the CEO of Tesla and Chairman of Solarcity, will “net” roughly $587 million to $632 million from his 22% stake in SolarCity along with a sizable increase in his Tesla position following the transaction. In a conference call Tuesday evening, Musk hailed the offer as a “blindingly obvious” step towards Tesla--what is in his own words, becoming “the best manufacturer on the planet”. Indeed, as per Tesla’s official blog, the synergies inherent within the merger are tremendous.
Based on shared ideals between the two companies, Tesla and Solarcity will be able to expand their addressable market more efficiently together, than they would otherwise separately. Furthermore, the union between the companies would enable Tesla to become the world’s first vertically integrated energy company, offering end-to-end renewable energy products to its customers; from the Tesla car you drive, to the SolarCity manufactured and installed panel coupled with Tesla’s Powerwall, powering your entire house.
However, the market was less than enthused, with some commentators quickly decrying the merger as a “distraction” from Tesla’s own struggle to meet production targets and attain profitability. And there was also the question of SolarCity itself: a stock that has been slammed by analysts and short sellers who lambasted its convoluted business model, unattainable installation goals, negative cash flow and dangerously high levels of debt.
And to Elon Musk, none of these things matter.
Instead of figures on a balance sheet, the Solarcity merger represents a continuation of a dream that began when he was just a sophomore at the University of Pennsylvania. There, when one of his professors asked the class to come up with a business proposal, Musk submitted a paper titled “The Importance of Being Solar”. In the essay, Musk wrote in detail how solar cells worked, then goes on to predict a rise in solar power, concluding with a futuristic design of an orbital power station, beaming solar energy down to earth. In other words, when it comes to Elon Musk, Tesla, SpaceX, Hyperloop, OpenAI and now SolarCity should not be considered in isolation,but as tesserae from a mosaic representing a grander vision. And as long as the sun continues to rise, you can bet that Musk will continue towards this vision; the market will just have to make peace with that.

Friday, June 24, 2016

check and credit card processing

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The Payment Industry is in need of a serious change.  For too long it has cost organizations far too much money and time to do something as simple as receiving money on their website or application.  It’s the Internet age, but for some reason organizations have to pay 2.9% of all of their revenue, wait weeks for bank approval, and hire a developer just to do what amounts to moving bits from one bank database to another.
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In person you can accept cash, credit, and check for your organization. But online you have been limited to just credit cards… and that gets expensive. But now, for the first time in history you can easily accept multiple online payment methods. And this has big implications for your bottom line and your customers’ payment flexibility. Because legacy checkout systems are 1 dimensional, organizations are cornered into absorbing unavoidable credit card fees.
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Monday, June 20, 2016

Interactive City Guides

Interactive City Guides - eComTech

Interactive search ebooks are interactive ebooks with multi-search engine capability built right in. No typing needed. You just pick it and click it.  The search engine algorithms are curating the search. The web pages on the top of each search are the ones who rank the best. You can see who is at the top. It tends to be the most authoritative experts and media.  It changes every day. It can literally change from minute to minute. It’s always current.  And fully mobile – it works on any device with an ebook reader and access to the Internet anywhere.
They are organized into several targeted information ebook series including: 
  • Business Marketing (by industry)
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  • Health & Wellness (by disease or issue)
  • Technology (by app, program, or device)
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Interactive Search can also be used to create course specific electronic handouts (ebooks, pdf files, and emails) -- educational tools for educators, coaches, teachers and working professionals to share so their students, seminar, or workshop participants receive expert guidance using search engines to find the best and most relevant content.

Interactive Search Book Marketing and Business Marketing ebooks

Search results are always up-to-date and current! You will learn the best and most current:
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The search engine results bring you the most current information and guidance. This guidance is literally at your fingertips and includes:.
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The results are always current and can change each minute of every day. It delivers the best collective intelligence continuously – the best ranked information and the best applications from the best sources – quickly.
And it’s fully mobile – capable of being operated on any computer or device with an ebook reader and a connection to the Internet.

Interactive Search Book electronic handouts (in either email, PDF or ePub file formats) can be created for any educational course or workshop.

We create a tailored Search Word Pro handout that parallels the planned topics and course outline.  
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Friday, June 17, 2016

Russia Is Really Good At Cyberspying

The Hackers That Broke Into The Democratic Party May Show That Russia Is Really Good At Cyberspying

John Dyer for VICE News

Whether the Russian government directed hackers to break into the Democratic National Committee's servers and steal opposition research on Donald Trump and other documents recently is an open question.
But experts said the hacking reflects the latest cyber and traditional espionage that Moscow has been pursuing lately: collecting data surreptitiously, often for years, with the goal of using information to humiliate and destabilize the country's rivals rather than steal money, industrial secrets or military information.
To be sure, Russia still aims to gain information on NATO, American politics and other issues. But Russia's cyberspies are following the examples of some activists and hackers who seek to violate their targets to score points in the realms of politics and public relations.
"We see a definite shift in cyberattacks from the financial-motivated or state-motivated theft," said Dave Ostertag, global investigations manager at Verizon who helped produce the telecommunication company's respected 2016 Data Breach Investigations Report, speaking to VICE News. "The data is being stolen more for embarrassment purposes. We see data posted somewhere on the internet simply to embarrass."
Related: Russian hackers broke into the Democratic Party and stole opposition research on Trump
News of the yearlong alleged Russian hacking broke on Tuesday. A company hired by the Democrats to investigate the breach, CrowdStrike Services, said groups codenamed Fancy Bear and Cozy Bear were behind the infiltrations. They are likely to be Russian, believed to work for Russia's military intelligence service, or GRU, and the Federal Security Service, or FSB, the successor agency to KGB that Russian President Vladimir Putin once led, said CrowdStrike, but were likely not coordinating their spying.
Soon after the news broke, however, a supposed lone wolf hacker or group of hackers called Guccifer 2.0 an allusion to a Romanian hacker who allegedly broke into the personal email accounts of former Presidents George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush and published awkward photos of the family posted what appear to be the documents that CrowdStrike claimed were stolen by the Russians. Guccifer 2.0 said WikiLeaks now had the files and would publish them soon.
They include potential Democratic lines of attack in the upcoming faceoff between the presumptive presidential candidates, Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican Trump, including references to Trump's ex-wife's claim that he raped her.
The Democrats and their consultants haven't confirmed the documents are real but they have raised questions about Guccifer 2.0's claims that he, she or they acted alone.
"CrowdStrike stands fully by its analysis," the company said on Wednesday in a statement. "Whether or not this posting is part of a Russian Intelligence disinformation campaign, we are exploring the documents' authenticity and origin."
Russia has denied involvement in the incident.
Joel Harding, a consultant and former officer in the Army's intelligence command, said he believed the Russians were behind the hack. He couldn't prove it and didn't think anyone could definitely say unless the Russian security agencies committed a stupid mistake. But a major political party is an obvious target for Russian government hackers, he said.
The outcome of the hack also suggests Moscow was behind it, Harding said. Russia has doubled down on "information warfare," or using and manipulating the media and other public information to achieve its geopolitical goals, he said. Meddling in an American election and suggesting the Democrats are preparing to smear Trump, thus lending support to the real estate tycoon whom Putin has praised, is in that vein.
Russia has hacked into Ukrainian national guard websites and inserted a press release saying they were preparing to violate a ceasefire. It also shut down Estonian networks when that country planned on moving a Soviet war memorial.
But while the GRU or FSB, or both, may have been using Russia's advanced cyberespionage methods to attack the Democratic National Committee, the state of Russian traditional espionage is not great, according to a report issued last month by the European Council on Foreign Relations. The Kremlin's intelligence agencies, it said, competed with each other as much as they spied on other countries, often duplicating efforts and acting sloppily.
"Unlike the hydra with its single controlling intellect, the agencies are often divided, competitive, and poorly tasked," the report said. "They are certainly not in charge of the Kremlin, but nor is the Kremlin wholly adept at managing them."
The report also noted that Russian cyberespionage often included "disinformation campaigns and political dirty tricks."
Harding agreed that the Russian intelligence services jockeyed against each other. But he said Putin has been increasing Russia's espionage budget to beef up spying abroad while also imposing order on the services' bureucracies.
"I know they are creating new cyber agencies. They are really investing in cyberespionage and they are really investing in intelligence," Harding said. "You have sleeper agents around the world, you have cyberespionage around the world and you have the combination of the two."
Similarly, Politico recently reported that the number of Russia's spies in Europe had roughly doubled in recent years as tensions have escalated between Russia and the West. It's impossible to be sure about the proportion of additional spies, said Harding. But Russia is more aggressive than ever in planting agents, as well as viruses that can quietly suck up information and access that might someday prove useful for as-yet-unknown purposes, he said.
"They are eating up the EU, all the counties in Europe," said Harding, "and spying on the US and Canada."

Thursday, June 02, 2016

PayPal Axing Apps for Windows Phone, BlackBerry and Android Fire

PayPal Axing Apps for Windows Phone, BlackBerry and Android Fire

PayPal is doing away with its apps for Windows Phone, BlackBerry and Android Fire next month.
PayPal account
PayPal image
The change will come as the digital payment platform updates its iOS and Android apps June 30. Customers using older versions of the mobile app will be required to upgrade to version 6.0.
Version 6.0 will be supported on Android devices running OS 4.03 or greater and Apple devices running iOS 8.1 or higher: iPhone 4S or greater, iPad 2 or greater, and iPod Touch 5th gen or greater.
Windows Phone users will still be able to access PayPal through the Web via Internet Explorer or Microsoft Edge. users, meanwhile, can use the PayPal add-in to send money directly from their inbox.
Amazon Fire and Blackberry users will be able to log into PayPal on their phones via the Web. Blackberry users will also be able to use the BBM app to send peer-to-peer payments via PayPal.
“It was a difficult decision to no longer support the PayPal app on these mobile platforms, but we believe it’s the right thing to ensure we are investing our resources in creating the very best experiences for our customers,” PayPal global consumer product and engineering vice-president Joanna Lambert said in a press release.
“We remain committed to partnering with mobile device providers, and we apologize for any inconvenience this may cause our customers.”
Android and iOS customers can get the latest versions of the PayPal app via the Apple App Store and Google Play store or at

Phoenix Brochure by R.G.Richardson – Books on Google Play

Phoenix Brochure by R.G.Richardson – Books on Google Play