FaceTime is going to fizzle.
During yesterday's Apple Worldwide Developers Conference event, Steve Jobs saved this new addition for his venerated "one more thing" announcement, effectively celebrating it as the killer iPhone 4 feature.
In case you missed it, FaceTime offers Skype-like video calling via the iPhone 4's front-facing camera. It's not entirely Skype-like, though; for now, FaceTime works only over Wi-Fi networks, not 3G.
I admit that video calling sounds cool on paper. It even looks cool in demo videos like the one up top. But you know what? I'm not interested. … Read more
Ever wonder what your hypothetical children would look like with your significant other or your favorite celebrity? Or what the product of a union between your dog and cat would produce? Morpheus Photo Mixer is a simple program that allows users to merge two separate images into one, with interesting and sometimes hilarious results.
The program's interface is plain and intuitive. Users simply load the two images they want to work with and then start aligning the desired features, using the real-time preview as a guide. The alignment process is a matter of surrounding the desired characteristics with dots … Read more
New third-party applications are trying to make it easier to reset Facebook privacy settings, following recent changes from the company that make a sizable chunk of profile content public by default when it was once under lock and key.
A firewall and spam filter company called Untangle launched a tool on Monday called SaveFace, which takes the form of a browser bookmark utility and sets as many Facebook profile elements as it can--contact information, friend lists and connections, wall posts--to "friends only."
"We wanted to help our customers get back to [the] Facebook of 2005," Untangle … Read more
The facial recognition technology that powers Face.com is now available to third-party developers. Those who are interested in using it inside of their applications will be able to take advantage of an open API that the company is making public Monday morning.
For consumers, Face.com's technology brings some very interesting things to the table. Face has already offered a tagging tool, as well as a recognition-based alert service for Facebook. But not everyone keeps their photos there. Using the new API, developers could build similar facial recognition tools into both desktop and Web based photo organizing apps … Read more
The next time you see someone with makeup that puts David Bowie to shame, don't laugh too much. He or she may be cleverly trying to fool face recognition and detection systems with a crazy or asymmetrical design.
It's generally not easy to avoid being spotted by face recognition and detection systems because they use a rather solid algorithm to identify faces, explains The Register:
Based on the so-called Viola-Jones method (PDF), the algorithm examines the spatial relationships of an object captured in an image and looks for features commonly found in faces. Most faces have a dark … Read more
With a surprise boost from Microsoft, the promise of rich typography on the Web just got a big step closer to reality.
The software company's involvement emerged Monday with sponsorship of a newer effort at the World Wide Web Consortium to standardize Web-based fonts with technology called the Web Open Font Format (WOFF). It's a fresh indicator of Microsoft's serious engagement with new Web standards--and it's a big boost for designers' attempts to stretch the Web beyond just the few typefaces that today can be expected to be already installed on people's computers.
It's … Read more
They were virtually unheard of a couple of years ago, but now low-cost, low-power Netbook laptops are among the most popular PCs. After all, they approximate the experience of a larger, more expensive laptop at a fraction of the size and price.
But just as we've started to see Netbooks from Asus, Acer, HP, or Dell on every coffee shop table or airplane seatback tray, Apple's iPad comes along, looking very much like a Netbook screen unhinged from the rest of its body. The question is naturally raised, is the iPad a Netbook-killer?
To pull the question back a little, when the iPad was first announced, one of the questions we wrestled with was whether it should be considered a computer at all. By some standards, the iPad is essentially a keyboardless laptop, but by others, it's more akin to a portable media player, such as the iPod Touch.
In the end, we tilted in the direction of "not a computer," and the factor that tipped the scale was Apple's use of the walled garden iPhone operating system. The iPad's lack of freedom to install basic apps and plug-ins, such as FireFox or even Flash, makes this far too limited a system to be considered a full-fledged computer.
That said, when going to press events or trade exhibitions, we sometimes leave the laptop at home if it looks like we'll only need access to e-mail, some light Web surfing, and maybe Twitter or Facebook to get through the day. After all, the iPhone, Palm Pre, and other smartphones can handle those chores under most circumstances.
So, with a bigger screen, more productivity apps, such as the iWork suite, and even an optional wireless keyboard, can we ditch our laptops and Netbooks for an iPad?
The short answer is probably not.… Read more
LAS VEGAS--Skype users, I have some good news.
There are currently quite a few high-definition Webcams on the market, but what faceVsion announced at CES 2010 is something rather unique, especially for video calling using Skype.
It's a new HD Webcam called the FV TouchCam N1 that's the result of a partnership between faceVsion and Skype. It's the first HD Webcam that's certified by Skype.
According to faceVsion, most existing HD Webcams suffer from the same barriers when it comes to HD video communication, especially when using Skype. These include the fact that CPU power is … Read more
After a trial release in July, Face.com on Wednesday launched Photo Tagger to the public. Photo Tagger is a free third-party application for Facebook that uses facial recognition technology to automatically tag photos of people.
Facebook users can use Photo Tagger to automatically tag their photos, it uses facial recognition software to tag all of the photos in an album. After selecting an album photo Tagger scans the photos, then batches them into groups by subject and suggests tags for them. When tags are confirmed, they are pushed live to Facebook, within the users privacy settings.
Photo Tagger also … Read more