Researchers at Penn state have developed a new method for calculating the habitable zone around stars. The computer model based on new greenhouse gas databases provides a tool to better estimate which exoplanets with sufficient atmospheric pressure might be able to maintain liquid water on their surface. The new model indicates that some of the nearly 300 possible Earth-like planets previously identified might be too close to their stars to to be habitable.
Continue Reading Updated model for identifying habitable zones around stars puts Earth on the edge
Section: Science and Education
Pennsylvania State University,
Keeping to a budget is difficult, especially when it’s pay-day and there’s that one thing that you just want to get your hands on: be it a new phone, or those headphones, or even a pair of shoes. We also hate calculating simple maths in our head and jotting them down on a budgeting notepad. Well, good news people, because now we can get our Android phones to do all that for us!
An app called Receipt by XDA Forum Member Bogdan-xd allows us to keep to a budget easily, and its concept and functionality are simple and practical. The app consists of 3 main components: a virtual receipt, a history, and statistics.
The virtual receipt allows you to jot down what you need to purchase, the quantity, and the price. It calculates the total amount needed to be spent. The total is compared to a user-set budget of x amount, and alerts you with a pleasant red color when the budget has been exceeded. Items on the list can be crossed out, allowing for real time budget keeping.
The history simply displays all receipts you’ve made, the time and date receipt was made, whether the budget was exceeded or not, and by how much. Statistics displays a graph of your spending, average amount of spending, and all grouped yearly, monthly, weekly, or daily. There’s also an option to turn on notifications for when budget has been exceeded.
Bogdan-xd has done a noteworthy job developing this app, packing a tedious activity into a simple and intuitive app for Android that’s also pleasant to the eye. For more details, visit the original thread.
The old beer-selling adage that good things come to those who wait also applies to those who’ve yet to sign away a kidney for one of EE’s LTE plans. ThreeUK is announcing that it’s going to bundle LTE into its existing unlimited mobile data packages without any additional charges. The network is planning to launch its own 4G product later in the year, using spectrum it snagged when T-Mobile and Orange were forced to sell of a chunk in order to see their marriage go through. As such, existing ThreeUK customers who own an LTE-ready device can expect to see their mobile internet shoot through the roof as soon as the capacity is switched on.
Filed under: Cellphones, Mobile
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The fastest serve ever recorded by a ping-pong player moved at about 70 mph (113 km/h). Professor Mark French of Purdue University’s Mechanical Engineering department and his graduate students, Craig Zehrung and Jim Stratton, have built an air gun for classroom demonstrations that fires a ping-pong ball at over Mach 1.2 (900 mph or 1,448 km/h). As the picture above shows, that’s fast enough for the hollow celluloid balls to blow a hole through a standard paddle.
Continue Reading Ping-pong gun fires balls at supersonic speeds
Section: Science and Education
Nikon has revealed a pair of new lenses which sit at opposite ends of the focal length spectrum. The NIKKOR 18-35mm f/3.5-4.5G ED zoom offers an ultra-wide angle on FX cameras and is suited to large group shots and architecture; while the NIKKOR 800mm f/5.6E is designed to cater to any super-telephoto needs you might have … if you’ve got the US$17,900 budget to buy one…
Continue Reading Nikon outs monster 800mm lens, new 18-35mm ultra-wide angle
Section: Digital Cameras
You might say the week is never really done in consumer technology news. Your workweek, however, hopefully draws to a close at some point. This is the Weekly Roundup on Engadget, a quick peek back at the top headlines for the past 7 days — all handpicked by the editors here at the site. Click on through the break, and enjoy.
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If you haven’t pre ordered the new BlackBerry Z10 because you’ve been holding out for the BlackBerry Q10, then the wait is now over. Rogers Wireless has added the all new QWERTY BlackBerry device to their preordering system. There still isn’t an official word from BlackBerry on when the Q10 will be available for purchase, but that hasn’t stopped Rogers. I’m personally loving the BlackBerry Z10, but I may just have to pick up the Q10 as well. Sound off in the comments on which device you’ve preordered or are picking up.
Preorder the all new BlackBerry Q10 from Rogers Wireless
How to unlock Blackberry cell phones Rogers Wireless opens preorders for the BlackBerry Q10!
Each week Ross Rubin contributes Switched On, a column about consumer technology.
In the golden era of the PDA, many debated whether future consumers would adopt a one-device or two-device approach. The two-devicers argued that the connectivity for phone calls would come from a simple, bare-bones cellphone while all the fancy data management would occur on a Bluetooth-tethered, PDA-like device unbound from cellular contracts. The Handspring Treo was for many the first converged-device handset that accomplished key tasks well enough to make a convincing case for handset integration, and the smartphone revolution ensued.
The first iPhone featured a large screen for its time but not a much larger footprint than its contemporary competitors such as the BlackBerry or Treo. Competitors asked if a 3.5-inch handheld palette was good for consuming web content, wasn’t a 4.3-inch display — like that on the HTC EVO 4G better? Screen sizes and attendant resolution continued to grow with the 5.3-inch Galaxy Note, 5.5-inch Galaxy Note II and culminating in the 6.1-inch Huawei Ascend Mate that debuted at CES. Samsung and Huawei are joined by LG, Sony and HTC in offering or announcing a 5-inch or larger Android phone. The latter joined the pocket-stuffing ranks with the 5-inch Droid DNA on Verizon, available in China as the HTC Butterfly.
Filed under: Handhelds
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Chips that have 3D elements to them are very much real. Moving data in 3D hasn’t been truly viable until now, however, which makes an experimental chip from the University of Cambridge that much more special. By sandwiching a layer of ruthenium atoms between cobalt and platinum, researchers found that they can move data up and down an otherwise silicon-based design through spintronics; the magnetic field manipulation sends information across the ruthenium to its destination. The layering is precise enough to create a “staircase” that moves data one step at a time. There’s no word on if and when the technique might be applied to real-world circuitry, but the advantages in density are almost self-evident: the university suggests higher-capacity storage, while processors could also be stacked vertically instead of consuming an ever larger 2D footprint. As long as the 3D chip technology escapes the lab, computing power could take a big step forward. Or rather, upward.
Filed under: Science
Source: University of Cambridge
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BlackBerry has been giving us little hints at to what they are going to air during their first ever Super Bowl advertisement. This one seems to be a half man, half elephant.
We’re not sure what expect here, but based on the teasers it’s not feeling like your standard BlackBerry device product feature commercial. What we do know is that we won’t have to wait much longer to find out. Kickoff is just a couple hours away. Any bets what quarter the commercial will air in?
How to unlock Blackberry cell phones BlackBerry offers yet another sneak peak at their Super Bowl ad
BlackBerry has been teasing the ad with image like this… but what is it?
I know y’all are probably getting into football mode – buying the beers, ordering the pizza, cracking open the chips – but let’s put on our marketer hats for a sec. We’re awaiting BlackBerry’s big Super Bowl commercial. This is a huge deal because after spending over a year wooing developers and more or less staying off the general public’s radar (even right through CES), this ad represents the first agressive push into mainstream consciousness. Expectations from those of us that have been following are pretty high. The ads that run during Super Bowl are well-known to be imaginative, powerful, and cost a healthy sum to run on air.
So! What would you like to see from BlackBerry’s Super Bowl ad? We’ve already seen what one highly-polished firm would do; would something along those lines work, or would you run something different? Which quarter will it run in? How important is this ad to the retail launch internationally? Does the delayed U.S. availability make this ad any less important?
How to unlock Blackberry cell phones What do you want to see in the BlackBerry Super Bowl commercial?
There was much wailing and gnashing of teeth when Microsoft declared that fairly fresh (and costly) Windows Phone 7 devices like the Nokia Lumia 900 would never taste its latest WP8 wares. To assuage hurt feelings and keep legacy phone owners within throwing distance of the latest devices like the Nokia Lumia 920 or HTC’s 8X, Redmond introduced Windows Phone 7.8 (version 7.10.8858), which started arriving via Zune on January 31st. It was likely hoping that the upgrade would tide legacy owners over until their contracts expired or boredom set in, at which point they’d get a new device packing WP8 — including not-too-costly models like the $249 (contract-free) Lumia 620. So the question is, will the 7.8 bone thrown at WP7 handset owners prevent them from looking at the greener Android or iOS grass across the fence? We’ve got a Lumia 610 here that was otherwise collecting dust, so head after the break to find out our thoughts.
Filed under: Cellphones, Software, Microsoft
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If you’re headed to BlackBerry Jam Europe in Amsterdam, you’ll likely want to go ahead and download the BlackBerry Jam Europe 2013 Mobile Guide to help you keep track of the things that are happening. With it you can view the full breakout session catalog, read up on speakers, view conference maps or create your schedule before getting to the event.
In addition to all of that, the conference app will automatically update when there are schedule changes, and synchronize with your conference calendar in the My Scheduler tool on your desktop. Just remember, the app is for attendees of the event. If you’re not going, you can still download it but it will have limited function. Thanks, Dave!
Download the BlackBerry Jam Europe 2013 Mobile Guide
How to unlock Blackberry cell phones BlackBerry Jam Europe 2013 Mobile Guide now available in BlackBerry World
With the unveiling of the new BlackBerry 10 devices this week from NYC and around the globe, the next big event to look forward to is BlackBerry Jam Europe. The event is being held in Amsterdam and BlackBerry has just announced that it is sold out. However, I’m sure lots of you have your tickets already and you are ready to rock and roll this BlackBerry Jam.
If you’re not going rest assured you can get all the latest news that comes out of Amsterdam right here on the CrackBerry blogs. We’ll be live blogging the keynote, so be sure to tune in next week for all the happenings from Amsterdam.
If you’re attending, let us know. Don’t forget to register for any breakout sessions you want to attend during the Jam. The BlackBerry Jam Europe 2013 Mobile Guide is also now available for download from BlackBerry World. I recommend downloading it if you are attending.
Register for you BlackBerry Jam Europe Breakout Sessions
Download the BlackBerry Jam Europe 2013 Mobile Guide from BlackBerry World
How to unlock Blackberry cell phones Keep it locked to CrackBerry for BlackBerry Jam Europe next week