posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
Hollywood 6.0 has been released. Since I'm not so sure most of you know what it is, here's the official description. Hollywood is a multimedia-oriented programming language that can be used to create graphical applications very easily. It was designed with the paradigm to make software creation as easy as possible in mind. Thus, Hollywood is suited for beginners and advanced users alike. Hollywood comes with an extensive function library (encompassing almost 700 different commands) that simplifies the creation of 2D games, presentations, and applications, to a great extent. It has been in development since 2002 and hence is today a very mature and stable software package.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
As mentioned earlier, I bought an iBook G3 so I could play around with Mac OS 9 some more - one of my favourite operating systems. This time around, I'm also taking a look at HyperCard, something I never experienced but am quite interested in. Since I know many of you grew up with Apple machines and possibly HyperCard, I was wondering if any of you have any recommendations for fun, interesting, or otherwise fascinating HyperCard stacks. I can see the potential all over HyperCard from the mere demos alone - and now I want to see what smart people could do with it.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
When Teddy Roosevelt declared the Grand Canyon a national monument, in 1908, he famously said: "Leave it as it is. You cannot improve on it. The ages have been at work on it, and man can only mar it." In that sense, the Escalade is a thumb in TR's eye. Covering hundreds of acres on Navajo Reservation land, it is arguably the most intrusive development ever proposed for the Grand Canyon - a $500 million to $1.1 billion recreation and transport facility featuring a 1.4-mile tramway equipped with eight-passenger gondolas that would carry as many as 10,000 people a day down to the river confluence, with new roads, hotels, gift shops, restaurants and other attractions. The developer - Confluence Partners LLC, a Scottsdale, Arizona-based investment group whose members' ventures include real estate, resorts and theme parks - says construction of the Escalade could begin as early as this year. I've been to the Grand Canyon. It is one of the most beautiful, awe-inspiring, unforgettable, and, well, grand pieces of nature our planet has to offer. My friends and I stood on one of the edges, at six in the morning, off-season in late October, without any other people around, and we slowly watched the sun rise over the Canyon, slowly lighting afire the reddish rocks as the shadows of night made way for the Arizona sun. It's not something you can describe in words or capture in a photograph. It's something you have to experience. Something emotional, and, I'm sure, for some people, something spiritual. This project should not continue. Ever. The Grand Canyon must not turn into the horrid Canadian side of Niagara Falls.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
The Dell XPS 13 ends up being responsive, small, light, and well built. Dell has crafted what I am sure most people were hoping for when the original Ultrabook specification was announced. On top of that, they have designed a laptop with class-leading battery life, and plenty of choice to let people buy as little or as much as they need. Considering the competition, this is clearly the Ultrabook of the Broadwell-U generation to beat, and from what we saw at CES it may very well go unchallenged for the remainder of the year. This is the kind of stuff Dell should restrict itself to. Looks like a winner - that battery life is exceptionally amazing.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
In the last few months, Cloanto started distributing Amiga System Software - the publisher traditionally refers to it as "Workbench" instead of "AmigaOS" - on CF cards, Floppy Disks and as a downloadable Workbench Disk Image Pack. Approached by Amiga-News, Cloanto's Michael Battilana confirmed that the company owns the copyrights for all works created by the Commodore/Amiga companies up to 1993. That seems like Cloanto now owns everything - but nothing could be farther from the truth, as the article details. Pieces of Amiga-related intellectual property are currently owned by three different companies, and there are also a few things with an unclear status. Cynically, you could rephrase the headline as 'Amiga IP ownership situation gets little less messy'.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
As promised with the new early access program, Jolla has released the latest Sailfish update for, well, early adopters. Assuming no major issues are found, this release will be pushed to all Sailfish users soon. The highlights (some screenshots): New weather application with events feed integration available through store Browser received a new interface Colours in ambiences can be adjusted Email authentication capabilities can be autodetected Improved low memory handling, now swap is properly taken into account The new browser interface is very welcome - the old one was quite cumbersome at times - so that alone makes it a worthwhile update.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
In an effort to eliminate bugs from upcoming iOS versions ahead of their general releases, Apple plans to launch the first-ever public beta program for the iOS operating system, according to multiple people briefed on the plans. Following the successful launch of the OS X Public Beta program with OS X Yosemite last year, Apple intends to release the upcoming iOS 8.3 as a public beta via the company’s existing AppleSeed program in mid-March, according to the sources. This release will match the third iOS 8.3 beta for developers, which is planned for release the same week. Apple then expects to debut iOS 9 at its June Worldwide Developer Conference, with a public beta release during the summer, and final release in the fall. Hopefully this will help address the many iOS bugs people are currently complaining about endlessly.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
American and British spies hacked into the internal computer network of the largest manufacturer of SIM cards in the world, stealing encryption keys used to protect the privacy of cellphone communications across the globe, according to top-secret documents provided to The Intercept by National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden. The hack was perpetrated by a joint unit consisting of operatives from the NSA and its British counterpart Government Communications Headquarters, or GCHQ. The breach, detailed in a secret 2010 GCHQ document, gave the surveillance agencies the potential to secretly monitor a large portion of the world’s cellular communications, including both voice and data. The company targeted by the intelligence agencies, Gemalto, is a multinational firm incorporated in the Netherlands that makes the chips used in mobile phones and next-generation credit cards. Among its clients are AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon, Sprint and some 450 wireless network providers around the world. The company operates in 85 countries and has more than 40 manufacturing facilities. One of its three global headquarters is in Austin, Texas and it has a large factory in Pennsylvania. The Americans and British hacking into a Dutch company's private network to steal information so they can spy on pretty much everyone. And we call them our "allies". This is way, way worse than whatever the North-Koreans supposedly did to Sony. In a just world, the people responsible for this act of aggression would be dragged to The Hague to face justice. Alas - we do not live in a just world. My own Dutch government will sweep this under the rug after some fake posturing for the electorate, and that's that.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
Sony announced last night that it's spinning off its audio and video divisions, much like it spun off its television division last year. That won't mean much right now; Sony still displayed interesting new Android-powered TVs at CES, and we're sure to see new crazy high-end Walkmans and camcorders with Sony branding from the newly independent AV division as well. But the long-term reality is far more stark: after years of promising "One Sony," CEO Kaz Hirai appears to be systematically breaking the company up for sale. The VAIO PC division was sold last year and just announced its first hybrid laptops as an independent company, and Hirai told investors that he has to consider spinning off the smartphone business and possibly selling the TV business outright. From one Sony to no Sony.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
It looks like Lenovo has been installing adware onto new consumer computers from the company that activates when taken out of the box for the first time. The adware, named Superfish, is reportedly installed on a number of Lenovo's consumer laptops out of the box. The software injects third-party ads on Google searches and websites without the user's permission. This is bad enough as it is, but surprise surprise, the malware in question is actually horribly insecure and allows for some crazy stuff to happen. Superfish, an adware program that Lenovo admitted in January it included as standard on its consumer PCs, reportedly acts as a man-in-the-middle" so it can access private data for advertising purposes. The adware makes itself an unrestricted root certificate authority, installing a proxy capable of producing spurious SSL certificates whenever a secure connection is requested. SSL certificates are small files, used by banks, social networks, retailers such as Amazon, and many others, to prove to incoming connections that the site is legitimate. By creating its own SSL certificates, Superfish is able to perform its advertising tasks even on secure connections, injecting ads and reading data from pages that should be private. Do not buy Lenovo. In fact, do not buy any Windows PC that is not a Signature Experience.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
However, if you have an older Mac that is not supported by OS X or some of the slower G3 machines (like the WallStreet, which officially supports up to OS X 10.2.8 Jaguar), there is still a strong case to be made for running OS 9 - and there are also certain software applications that are only supported in OS 8/9 that may be mission critical for some users. I bought an old iBook G3/500 (it'll arrive tomorrow) because I've always wanted an Mac OS 9 laptop (I've had several desktop OS 9 machines over the years). This article is a nice starting point for those (oh so very few) of us who want to run OS 9 in today's world.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
The IESG has formally approved the HTTP/2 and HPACK specifications, and they're on their way to the RFC Editor, where they'll soon be assigned RFC numbers, go through some editorial processes, and be published.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
The U.S. National Security Agency has figured out how to hide spying software deep within hard drives made by Western Digital, Seagate, Toshiba and other top manufacturers, giving the agency the means to eavesdrop on the majority of the world's computers, according to cyber researchers and former operatives. That long-sought and closely guarded ability was part of a cluster of spying programs discovered by Kaspersky Lab, the Moscow-based security software maker that has exposed a series of Western cyberespionage operations.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
In November 2012 the Mozilla Foundation announced "Project Shumway", an effort to create a "web-native runtime implementation of the SWF file format." Two-and-a-bit years, and a colossal number of Flash bugs later, Shumway has achieved an important milestone by appearing in a Firefox nightly, a step that suggests it's getting closer to inclusion in the browser. I was unaware Flash needed a 'killer' at this point.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
Kevin Lee calls it "Steve Jobs Syndrome." As the former head of product strategy and user experience design at Samsung Design America, Lee watched as the $100 billion Korean tech giant wrote check after check to countless Western design firms to develop future products for the Korean company. The designers would dig in their heels, refusing to budge on their grand idea or see how it might fit into Samsung's vast production line. And Samsung management would either discard the idea entirely, or water it down so much that the product became another meaningless SKU in the hundreds of products Samsung sells today. The 'Steve Jobs Syndrome' thing makes no sense - clicks! Clicks! Clicks! - but the rest looks accurate. You can't buy taste - the rumoured one million gold Apple Watches are proof enough of that.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
Barack Obama has angered officials in Europe after suggesting that investigations by the European Union into companies like Google and Facebook were "commercially driven." In an interview with Recode, the president claimed that European "service providers who ... can't compete with ours, are essentially trying to set up some roadblocks for our companies to operate effectively there." The truth, however, is more nuanced than this. Right, because the US would never do anything to protect its own companies above foreign ones.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
It's not a secret that I've been working on sandboxed desktop applications recently. In fact, I recently gave a talk at devconf.cz about it. However, up until now I've mainly been focusing on the bundling and deployment aspects of the problem. I've been running applications in their own environment, but having pretty open access to the system. Now that the basics are working it's time to start looking at how to create a real sandbox. This is going to require a lot of changes to the Linux stack. For instance, we have to use Wayland instead of X11, because X11 is impossible to secure. We also need to use kdbus to allow desktop integration that is properly filtered at the kernel level.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
How big of a phenomenon is the Raspberry Pi? The charity organization behind the tiny, low-cost computer announced this morning that over 5 million Pis have now been sold. The original Pi went on sale about three years ago next week, so 5 million is a pretty huge milestone to hit in that short period of time. The organization boasts that this figure appears to make it "the biggest selling UK computer manufacturer ever," though you wouldn't be wrong to take issue with its comparison: Pi is selling $20 to $35 computers - not machines that you're going to use for serious productivity for a few years. Impressive, and well-deserved.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
LG today has unveiled its latest Android Wear building on the original LG G Watch R and coming up with a more stylish and formal and all-metal "LG Watch Urbane" that's "designed for a sophisticated and cosmopolitan wearer." Available in gold or silver, it's still a standard 22mm model, so you'll be able to swap out straps if you like. LG's slimmed down the bezel, as well as the overall size and thickness. The stainless steel handle also has improve protection against scratches and corrosion. This is starting to look quarterway decent, but it's still Android Wear, and Android Wear sucks, so it still a long, long way off from passing the funeral test. I'm glad LG is taking the smartwatch in this direction though - a little less computer, a little more watch. The competition - including Apple - can learn from this.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
In 1989, Commodore began an endeavor which was way overdue. The creation of a near Amiga-quality computer that is 8-bit in spirit, compatible with the popular Commodore 64 (through an emulation mode), and containing a built in disk drive. Assuming that the price range could have been set below $499, and assuming that this project had been done back in 1985 instead of 1989-1991, I believe this would have been an big seller for Commodore, and would have breathed life into them which would have extended CBM beyond 1994. I never knew they tried to create the Commodore 65. Fascinating. There's even an emulator for it.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
It's pure arrogance for Silicon Valley to imagine that it can make wearables cool by hiring a few fashion people, putting the product on a runway, or throwing money at "collaborations" with brands. This is a new game they're trying to play, one with different rules. The rollout of the Apple Watch would look much different if it were orchestrated by a brand like Chanel. Instead of being released at $350, it would hit stores with a price tag in the thousands. Consumers would clamor to get their hands on one, only to be stymied by limited runs, which would further stoke desire. Only after a few years of artificial scarcity would it enjoy wider release. Obnoxious? Maybe. But to do cool right, brands have to jettison tech world values like accessibility and utopianism. Cool isn't fair. You can't have it both ways. We'll see how it goes. The Apple Watch will sell pretty well early on - but I have no idea how well it will do in the long term. Most wearables end up inn drawers, uncharged, forgotten. Time will tell if the Apple Watch will be any different.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
A very long portrait of Jonathan Ive. There are way too many things to quote here, so I'm picking this one. One morning at Apple’s headquarters, a few weeks earlier, Ive recalled how, in 1997, the company seemed to be dying around him. "Every story you'd read, every morning before coming to work, started with the phrase 'The beleaguered computer maker, Apple,' " he said. Ive was then thirty; after five years at the company, he had become its head of industrial design. “There was a Wired cover that had a big Apple logo with a crown of barbed wire, as thorns, and underneath it just said, 'PRAY.' I remember this because of how upsetting it was. Basically saying: either it's going to just go out of business or be bought." It's remarkable how Apple went from effectively bankrupt (no joke: the company was 90 days from going bankrupt) to what it is today. A lot of Apple fans like to make fun of Michael Dell's comment that Apple should just shut down and give its money to shareholders, but at that time, that comment was entirely, 100% accurate. The only reason Apple got back up on its feet was Steve Jobs, and nothing else. This recovery was a miracle, and nobody - nobody - saw it coming. This miraculous recovery will be taught in schools and universities for centuries to come.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
XDA forum member RustyGrom has already figured out how to install Windows 10 Technical Preview for phones onto non-approved Lumia devices. As always with Windows - it's a simple registry switch. From a high level this works by using FiddlerCore to intercept the traffic going to the Microsoft WPflights server that controls the Insider app and responds with our own custom data. The app accepts registry editing information from the web responses and acts upon that. This allows us to write stuff to select locations in the registry. In the case of the Windows 10 Preview, it appears to only look for your phone's PhoneManufacturerModelName to decide if it should be offered previews. Windows Update also checks this value. Other devices like Samsungs or HTCs may need different settings. The hack is still in its early stages, and really, don't do this if you have no idea what you're doing, but there are already reports of success. XDA is a magical, magical place.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
Hyperion Entertainment Cvba in Sint-Agatha-Berchem (Brussel) was declared bankrupt by the court in Brussel on 27-01-2015. The appointed curator is Bert Dehandschutter. The company number is 466380552. The (main) activity of Hyperion Entertainment Cvba is computer programming, consultancy and related activities. Hyperion is the company that developers AmigaOS 4.x. I've never quite understood how, exactly, the licensing situation was arranged - the owned the right to develop the operating system, but did not own the brands and operating system itself etc. etc. - but let's just hope this isn't the end of the road for AmigaOS.

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posted about 1 month ago on OSNews
Following a report today that Apple was hiring experts from the automotive industry for a new research lab, The Wall Street Journal adds to the story claiming Apple has several hundred employees working on an Apple-branded electric car: Apple has several hundred employees working secretly toward creating an Apple-branded electric vehicle, according to people familiar with the matter. They said the project, code-named "Titan," has an initial design of a vehicle that resembles a minivan, one of these people said. The report adds that CEO Tim Cook approved the project close to a year ago with product design Vice President Steve Zadesky leading the group, lining up with rumors that Apple is working on something that will "give Tesla a run for its money." Apple as a car company.

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