iTunes Store Launches in 52 More Countires

Apple has launched iTunes in 52 more countries, including Russia, Turkey, India, and South Africa, slowly expanding their world wide influence.

iTunes is like the father of modern digital music, movie, and in part software stores. From selling music, to movies, and being the program of choice when the first modern smartphone, the iPhone, launched. However their was a notice on the press release that stated “Movies are available today in Russia, Turkey, India and Indonesia, and will be available in select additional countries.”

Image courtesy of Apple.

Image courtesy of Apple.

The iTunes Store features local artists including Elka in Russia, Sezen Aksu in Turkey, AR Rahman in India, and Zahara in South Africa,” Apple stated in their press release, “international artists including The Beatles, Taylor Swift and Coldplay, and world-renowned classical musicians including Lang Lang, Yo Yo Ma and Yuja Wang.”

This also expands their music library to over 20 million songs, and available in 119 countries, with apps available in 155 countries.

Originally posted on Technorati.

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500px App Released for Android

The app called 500px, a popular photo sharing alternative to Flickr, has finally released on Android on April 19.

Their iOS app has been a smash hit for their users, and many have praised it for a sleek minimalist design. “The app takes cues from our iPad app, which is praised by its minimalistic and beautiful interface and focus on large, beautiful photos.” 500px said in their blog post upon release.

Taking queues from this success they have built their android counterpart to much of the same design.

The app will allow users to log-in or to sign up for a 500px account. View full resolution photos, share the photos across various social networks like Twitter and Facebook. As well as the standard favoring, commenting, and reading functions that come with most social apps.

One thing that catches the eye is the ability to read the EXIF information and location. Essentially the EXIF information is a collection of data that cameras, scanners, video cameras, and even tape recorders store on the file.

While the need to read a photos EXIF information isn’t crucial, I know as a photographer that it is something that you want to do from time to time. It gives people a more technical look at the file.

Originally posted on Technorati.

Wave Good-bye to Google Wave!

Wave goodbye to Google Wave, once and for all!

Yes it is true; Google is officially pulling the plug on Google Wave. The official report states that “we (Google) are not continuing active development of Google Wave as a stand-alone product.” But for all you people out there who like, or even love Google Wave, there is still hope. Google is working on an open source project called Wave in a box, which will make Google wave accessible through Google Docs.

Wave in a box has made significant growth, and Apache Software Foundation has accepted it into its incubator for new projects. It is Google’s hope that with the release of Wave in a box, and the wave protocol, that Wave will in fact live on — live on in a private server that is. You can find the Wave protocol here.

Wave.Google.com will remain up into later this year, when a suitable replacement can be found that will host all of the waves. Until then, zip files can be downloaded and stored until needed and or until a suitable Wave substitute can be found.

So what will become of Wave? Well, nothing is for sure, but Google has said it plans to integrate it into other Google services. Which is what most, if not all Wave users suggested upon its release, didn’t they? So perhaps we will ride the Google Wave again someday, or like various other Google projects (like the Google video Codec, Google video, etc.) it will be but a pile of code on the backup drives of a server.

Originally posted on Technorati.

 

It’s a Chrome OS Christmas

‘Twas two weeks before Christmas, and all through the house not a nerd was stirring, not even the wireless mouse. All the stockings were hung, by the computer with care, in hopes that Google Chrome OS would soon be here.

Yes, it’s true, folks, Google has finally taken the next step in the Chrome OS project. That step is the Chrome OS pilot program. Through the pilot program two things can happen.

First: Everyday people like you can finally test out the Chrome OS. The program makes the Chrome OS computer available to business, education, Non-Profits, developers, and even individual use. Way to go Google, finally someone has recognized that the people should be allowed to test the products, not just the companies.

Second: Google gets to receive feedback, bug reports, suggestions, and see what the people think about their latest innovation.

The lucky few who are accepted into the pilot program will receive a Cr-48 Chrome notebook.

The Cr-48 will come equipped with the Chrome OS ready to go in only 10 seconds. That is without a doubt a record start-up time for any computer system. A built in Wi-Fi & 3G card, as well as the standard wire hookup. With your new notebook you can stream videos to your 12 “ LCD monitor, then impress your friends about it via your favorite social network using your fully loaded keyboard and over-sized touchpad.  If you want, you can use the built-in webcam to create a quick video for your YouTube channel. For those of you who are always on the go, you have the luxury of knowing this notebook has an eight-hour battery life (when being actively used) and a week standby battery life. To top this all off, this beauty of a laptop will only weigh about 3.8 pounds. So it is a must for travelers.

But Google did leave four things out. Only one thing is actually a downside in my opinion, but even that can be avoided. There is no spinning disk, no caps-lock key, function key, and though we will all miss them so much Google has chosen to opt out of the lap burn feature, most notebooks come with. DAMN!
So as the holiday season rolls around, and all the major end of the year holidays begin, some lucky folks will have the luxury of typing away on their new Google Chrome Cr-48 Chrome notebooks.

If you want to be one of the few lucky Chrome pilot program testers please shoot on over to the a target pilot page here, and sign up before December 21st at 11:59 PM.

Originally posted on Technorati.

 

Browser Review: RockMelt Vs. Flock

The Internet is like space. Hell, it even has its own term, “Cyber Space,” and it – just like space – goes on forever. The four most popular Internet trends are; social networking, E-Mail, blogging, and internet shopping.

The Internet has grown along with these and many more features. Just recently in the past few years, it has evolved to help link them all together via – these little pestering things we all get invites for – apps. Link your Facebook, Twitter, Digg, Gmail, Blog, RSS feeds, and everything else to one account. But what happens when Chromium (An open source browser engine developed by Google) – changes all that?

Well it has. Chromium has helped to create one of the fastest & rapidly growing popular browsers (Google Chrome.) But thanks to this engine, other browsers have been birthed. Two of which are what we in the Technology world have labeled “Social Media Browsers.” These are browsers that link everything; Facebook, Twitter, Email and so on, within the browser itself. These two revolutionary browsers I speak of are Flock & RockMelt.

Let’s start with Flock. This browser was originally built using Mozilla open source code that Firefox runs off of. But now runs on the Chromium engine. The installment of this browser is as simple and exactly the same as installing Chrome. But once you launch Flock, for the first time, you have the option of importing all your favorites, bookmarks, and other information.

It also has its own account feature. The Flock account keeps all your social networking and account information secure. It allows you to link your accounts to a general or master account. So you must log in to a master account (as it were) to access your social stream. Compared to Chrome itself, and taking into account all the streaming social network information this browser does and can take in, I’d say it’s pretty fast.

The only thing I don’t like about this browser is that upon importing all your information, I found my Bookmarks and the like to be a little… screwy. But hey nothing is perfect, especially if it is Internet related!

Next is my favorite browser. Obviously you can tell which one I like most already, and which one essentially “Wins” in this article. RockMelt is another Chromium powered browser. It has recently entered its public Beta stage. All you have to do is connect your Facebook profile via the RockMelt website, then wait to receive a Beta invite within the next few days. Most people seem to get it within 42 hours.

Then once you get the Beta invite, there is the standard Chromium browser set-up. Then here comes the catch, you pretty much have to give RockMelt supreme control of you’re Facebook. Admittedly I did think twice before hitting the approve button. Overall the RockMelt browser shares a lot in common with Flocks design, Menu, and User Interface.

There are a few UI problems, for example your social stream (Called EDGE) can disappear and become unavailable from time to time. The Twitter feed goes dead and at times can be completely useless. But all this comes down to is that it’s a Beta program and still and has a lot of room to grow, improve – and has serious potential.

At the end for the day, I would suggest both of these browsers to anyone involved in the social media world, of the internet.

I give Flock a 3.5 out of 5, for a very original idea, and great features, that kept me browsing.

I give RockMelt a 4 out of 5, for a slim design, great integration and customization.

Originally posted on Technorati.