Oregon Trail is a classic educational PC game from the 1970s (revamped in the 1990s) that still haunts those students who tried to make it from Independence, Missouri to Oregon's Willamette Valley, hunting bison and bear and losing party members to cholera . Some say Pong or Tetris launched video gaming into the mainstream--but neither Pong nor Tetris had you struggling to control an internal tantrum in the middle of math class when you lose your wagon while fording a river.
As the browser becomes the driving engine behind several operating systems, extensive hardware controls are landing as built-in HTML5. The latest developer's build of Firefox Aurora can now record by default video from your camera and audio from your microphone.
Firefox 20 Aurora (download for Windows, for Mac, for Linux, and for Android) has the new hardware API getUserMedia enabled by default, which means that you won't have to use a plugin to record directly from your local camera or mic. In her blog post announcing the update, Maire Reavy, Firefox's product lead on media, provided an … Read more
Sometimes, there is truth in advertising. Today's case-in-point: Abine's DeleteMe Mobile, which, as the name suggests, vigorously petitions Internet data brokers to remove personally identifying information from their databases.
Previously only available as a Web service, the app debuts on iOS with an Android version in the works. As CNET reported last year, DeleteMe is a partially human-powered service where Abine employees take on the onerous duty of contacting data brokers on your behalf. That's an important step because many of them have been known to add your data again, just months after removing it, according to … Read more
Research In Motion's BlackBerry 10 application marketplace will have thousands of more programs, thanks to two events the company ran over the weekend.
The events saw RIM net 15,000 app submissions for BlackBerry 10 within a period of 37.5 hours, according to Alec Saunders, vice president of developer relations. The events were called Portathons, with one focusing on the BlackBerry 10 Community and the other on Android developers. In both cases, developers were urged to port their previously developed applications to BlackBerry 10.
RIM has held similar events in the past. The company does so to get … Read more
LAS VEGAS--While the presence of software and apps at CES has certainly grown over the past few years, the fact remains that downloads still sit in the shadows of home theater components, gaming equipment, mobile devices, and other hardware at the annual show. At this point, we're beginning to think that software may never take center stage at CES. From an economic standpoint, it might not make much sense for a company to double down on an expensive booth to showcase a straightforward, downloadable app when the show continues to gravitate toward colorful plastics and shiny metals.
Rather, we … Read more
LAS VEGAS--Every year at CES, the Mobile Apps Showdown pits dozens of downloads against one another to see which mobile app emerges as the best. This year's event was the biggest yet, and based on the excitement we saw there, we think it will only continue to grow.
Here's how it works: a panel of judges first narrows the pool of entrants down to 10 finalists. The developers of the finalists are then invited to present their apps to a live audience at the Mobile Apps Showdown here in Las Vegas, and the app that receives the loudest … Read more
Adobe Systems' Flash Player plug-in has been under attack in Web development circles for years, but now Adobe's Reader software is becoming more of a target in the war against plug-ins.
The Portable Document Format for years was an awkward part of the Web, often ambushing the unwary with long page-load times as the Adobe Reader plug-in loaded. But PDFs have become more common, exposed in Google search results and used … Read more
California's attorney general issued long-promised guidelines on mobile privacy today. The "Privacy on the Go (PDF)" report address the varied interests in smartphone and mobile app development, including app developers, carriers, ad networks, and operating system makers.
"We are now offering this set of privacy practice recommendations to assist app developers, and others, in considering privacy early in the development process," Attorney General Kamala Harris wrote in an introduction to the guidelines.
Sarah Downey, online privacy analyst at online privacy firm Abine, agreed that it's important to get the various mobile interests focused on … Read more
LAS VEGAS--As Firefox OS develops partially in the public eye, Mozilla shows off two interesting changes to how the operating system handles apps at the CES 2013.
The first change could have wide-reaching consequences for anybody who's built a Web site and wants to get in on the mobile app revolution. Part of the Everything.me investment, Mozilla has come up with a way for people to turn their Web sites into mobile apps using manifest files. It could revolutionize app marketplaces, said Christian Heilmann, Mozilla's lead developer on Firefox OS.
"App markets right now are like … Read more
LAS VEGAS--When you come to CES here, you expect to see computers and TVs galore. Mobile phones, sure. Printer and speakers? Check. But a 50-foot-long mechanical snake?
Though we're in an arid, desert-like Nevada environment (never mind all the cement and golf courses), this isn't Burning Man. But sure enough, just behind the CNET trailer here, Titanoboa is strutting its stuff. And indeed, Titanoboa is a 50-foot mechanical snake.
Created by EatArt, the Vancouver arts collective, Titanoboa seeks to invoke the promise -- or the threat -- of global climate change, and the kinds of things we might start to see happen on this wonderful planet of ours. According to the Titanoboa project page: … Read more