NSA installed spy malware on laptops purchased online

Der Spiegel based on internal NSA documents, reports that the signals intelligence agency’s elite hacking unit (TAO) is able to conduct sophisticated wiretaps in ways that make Hollywood fantasy look more like reality. The report indicates that the NSA, in collaboration with the CIA and FBI, routinely and secretly intercepts shipping deliveries for laptops or other computer accessories in order to implant bugs before they reach their destinations.



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10 technology predictions for 2014

How will technology play out in 2014?

Silicon Valley may again need to watch out for Microsoft, cheap smartphones will hit markets, and the Edward Snowden revelations will launch the Year of Encryption. Those are a few predictions from Mark Anderson, founder and publisher of the Strategic News Service newsletter, long a must-read for industry leaders and venture capitalists, and host of Future in Review, an annual gathering for tech leaders, investors, and policymakers The Economist called “the best technology conference in the world.”



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Analysts predict $13.1 billion game market for China in 2013 with end of game console ban

The end of the console ban means that Nintendo, Sony, and Microsoft can now legally sell their systems in the country.

Niko Partners, an Asian games market research firm, predicts a $13.1 billion game market for China in 2013. This is in its China Games Market Mid-Year 2013 Update Bulletin, which includes data and analysis of video game salesfor the country that has recently lifted a long-standing ban on consoles. That’s a 28 percent growth for online PC games compared to 2012 and a 60 percent increase for mobile games revenue.



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Microsoft turns spoken English into spoken Mandarin – in the same voice


Microsoft has posted a video with a complementary explanation of language translation that goes far past what we thought was currently possible.  The speaker explains and demonstrates improvements made to the machine understanding of his English words, which are automatically transcribed as he speaks. He then demonstrates having those words translated directly into Mandarin.



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Kinect for Windows – Microsofts plan to bring about the era of gesture control

Startup company GestSure uses Kinect for Windows to allow surgeons to look through medical images without having to touch unsterile equipment.

Most of the talk about Microsoft this fall will be about its new operating system, Windows 8.  But the company is working hard on a long-term effort to reinvent the we interact with existing computers  with its new Surface tablet. The company wants to make it as common to wave your arms at or speak to a computer as it is to reach for a mouse or touch screen today.


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The downfall of Microsoft

Steve Ballmer

Microsoft C.E.O. Steve Ballmer

Two-time George Polk Award winner Kurt Eichenwald analyzes one of American corporate history’s greatest mysteries—the lost decade of Microsoft— traces the “astonishingly foolish management decisions” at the company that “could serve as a business-school case study on the pitfalls of success.” Relying on dozens of interviews and internal corporate records—including e-mails between executives at the company’s highest ranks—Eichenwald offers an unprecedented view of life inside Microsoft during the reign of its , in the August issue. Today, a single Apple product—the iPhone—generates more revenue than all of Microsoft’s wares combined.

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Integrated approach to mobile devices is winning


Chistensen illustrates the difference between mobile devices today with this famous graph.

Microsoft had taken the same approach to mobile devices that they had with PCs until last week’s announcement of the new Surface tablet: build the software themselves and let partners build the hardware. Google took a similar strategy with Android but then reversed course when they acquired Motorola. Apple’s integrated strategy was once widely ridiculed as a repeat of their losing 1990′s desktop computer strategy, but is now being copied throughout the industry.

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