Apps & Software

New Emergency Alert System Comes to Your Phone

The emergency broadcast system got an upgrade today as a new text-alert system was unveiled at the World Trade Center site by the heads of the FCC and FEMA, along with Mayor Michael Bloomberg. The new system, called PLAN, will allow officials to send alerts to compatible phones in the event of a national or regional emergency. It will be …

A Brief History of Skype

Microsoft just bought Skype for $8.5 billion. Not to get too personal, but that’s many, many billions more than I make in a year. But unlike buying a human writing machine like yours truly at an affordable price, Microsoft is paying $8.5 billion for something called Skype. Here’s what it’s getting.

Remember Kazaa?

Kazaa, in case …

Google Announces Web Music Service, Movie Rentals and More

Google’s 2011 developer conference kicked off on Tuesday, May 10. Did you see the live blog? It’s O.K. if you didn’t. I’m not one of those How dare you not read everything I write! kind of writers. I just sort of fell into this whole blogging thing a few years back after my career in modern dance was cut short due to my lack of talent, …

Google Goggles’ Business Card Recognition Works like a Dream

Business cards: can’t stand them. Can. Not. Stand. Them. If you want me to be able to get ahold of you, just give me your fax number, okay? Teletype works, too. In a pinch, I’ll hit you on your beeper—if I leave “911″ after my callback number, call back quickly! It’s an emergency.

Let’s get totally serious, though. If I’m given a …

Dangerous Post-Conflict Landmines Everywhere? There’s an App for That

All joking aside, unexploded landmines pose serious, serious threats to post-war communities. In late 2010, it was reported at a UN Council meeting that 3,956 people died due to undetected explosives, without even taking into account the countless injuries and limbs lost in the aftermath. What’s more is they debilitate entire …

New Yorker Subscribers Get the iPad App Now, Too

The New Yorker‘s iPad app is one of the nicest tablet versions of any print magazine: published every Monday at the same time as its paper-and-staples equivalent, it features additional pieces of writing, photography and video, poets reading their poems aloud, and bonus cartoons, among its electronic bells and whistles. (It even includes …

Skype Promises to Fix Deadly Voice-Over-IP Exploit This Week

Hi there! I’m the latest “wants-to-be-friends” friendly surfing Skype, and if you add me now, I promise I won’t exploit a security vulnerability that lets me take super-secret command of your Mac, or even—on a whim—expunge every last byte you hold precious! Actually you don’t need to add me at all–this next message should …

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