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IBM disables Siri on employee iPhones in the name of security

IBM Siri disabled

In an interview with MIT publication Technology Review, IBM CIO Jeanette Horan admitted that the company disables the use of Siri on employee iPhone smartphones. Why is that? Well, since anything spoken to Siri is sent and stored on Apple servers, the thinking is that employees may speak things that shouldn't be in the hands of anyone but IBM--and certainly not in the hands of one of its toughest competitors.

It's not just Siri that's not allowed. Cloud sharing tools like Dropbox and iCloud are also disabled, and employees aren't even allowed to forward internal IBM email message to external non-IBM addresses.

Read More | MIT Technology Review


HP getting rid of PC business, webOS devices dead

HP webos

Hewlett-Packard on Thursday confirmed that it will acquire U.K.-based Autonomy for $10.2 billion and is looking to spin off its PC assets.

Together with its plans to stop supporting webOS devices, the announcements mark a major change for HP. They appear to represent a seismic shift in how the Silicon Valley computing giant, the world's largest tech company in terms of annual revenue, plans to conduct business going forward.

The HP board's authorization of "the exploration of strategic alternatives for its Personal Systems Group (PSG)" includes "a broad range of options that may include, among others, a full or partial separation of PSG from HP through a spin-off or other transaction." Unlike the dumping of recently acquired Palm, slipping badly in a market dominated by Apple and devices running Google's Android OS, a spin-off of the PSG means HP would be parting with a long-standing investment that has turned into the biggest PC maker in the world.

Click to continue reading HP getting rid of PC business, webOS devices dead

Man vs. Machine: Jeopardy-Style

Posted by K.C. Morgan Categories: Games, Reality, Specials, Syndication, Video,

IBM is taking computer gaming to an epic level.

Monday marked the debut of the supercomputer Watson, a machine so smart it’s capable of playing a game of Jeopardy . . . and maybe, winning it. The three-day game pits the computer against the show’s two greatest champions, Brad Rutter and Ken Jennings, and at the end of Round 1 Watson is tied for first place.

Watson ruled categories like “Beatles People” and “Literary Characters APB,” though it struggled and offered wrong answers to other categories, including “Name the Decade.”

Still, the computer’s prowess was such that at the end of the episode, it’s tied with Rutter with $5,000 in the Jeopardy game bank . . . and champion Ken Jennings trails behind the machine with only $2,000 in the till. Check out the video above to get a look at Watson in action.

Read More | E! Online

Jeopardy! Champions to Challenge IBM Computer Program

Posted by K.C. Morgan Categories: Games, Syndication, Video,

We would call this contest man versus machine, but Ken Jennings is more superhero than man.

The famed Jeopardy! winner, along with fellow champ Brad Rutter, will test his wits against IBM’s Watson program. Designed by the company’s artificial intelligence team, Watson will take on the two challengers over a three-day contest being held on February 14 though 16.

IBM hosted a similar competition in 1997, when it created a chess-playing computer to compete against champion Garry Kasparov. The computer (Deep Blue) won the six-game match by two games.

Click to continue reading Jeopardy! Champions to Challenge IBM Computer Program

Read More | Yahoo! News

IBM Develops Advanced Computer Voice

Posted by Sheila Franklin Categories: Corporate News, Science,

IBM LogoIBM is working on an advanced computer voice that is almost indistinguishable from a human’s. Referred to as “generating paralinguistic phenomena via markup in text-to-speech syntheses,” the voice is programmed to use verbal tics like, ‘um’ and ‘er.’ It can react to an interruption by saying “shhh” and has an algorithm that can learn expressions at correct sentence points. The company plans on using them in telephone helplines, satellite navigation systems, cameras, etc. So we guess the Authors Guild may have a valid concern about the next generation of Kindle after all.

Read More | Telegraph

Lenovo To Release Trio of Notebooks in U.S.

Posted by Sheila Franklin Categories: Corporate News, PC / Laptop,

Lenovo Notebook

China’s Lenovo has finally introduced its first computers in the States since it bought out IBM in 2005, although they now sell them in China, Singapore, and India. Their 3 new notebooks feature software with user recognition for log-in without a password and multimedia tech for music, images, and videos. They will be available in a choice of black, red, or blue. One of them has debuted at a price of $799.00, another will be out towards the end of the month for ~$1,199.00, with a third to come in April. Lenovo will also be selling them in other countries after the unveiling here.

Read More | Reuters

Universal Avatars To Be Developed

WOW UnbrokenIBM and Linden Lab’s Second Life are collaborating to create universal avatars that will be able to travel between virtual worlds. Both companies are hoping that more gamers will explore virtual worlds by making them simplified. They are putting the emphasis on a single system for now that allows users to move between worlds. The announcement came before the launch of the Virtual Worlds Conference in San Jose, California, this week. Last year there were only 9 virtual sites, but that number has jumped to thirty. We want to know if you go from Warcraft to Second Life, could you get to stay in your armor?

Read More | BBC

IBM to Plug In World’s Fastest Computer - Blue Gene/P

Blue GeneIBM has just launched the planet’s fastest computer. Bought by the U.S. government, the Blue Gene/P is capable of “petaflop” speeds, equal to 1,000 trillion calculations per second, which makes it 100,000 more powerful than an ordinary PC. Blue Gene/P will be installed at the DOE Argonne National Laboratory in Illinois and its purpose is to study simulation in various areas, from particle physics to nanotechnology.  This new computer is three times faster than the Blue Gene/L, which is now in charge of our nuclear weapons. We just wonder if they could make a Blue Gene/W to watch over the other two occasionally.

Read More | BBC

Cell Speeds Up Medical Imaging Fifty Times

Posted by Christopher Sasaki Categories: Hardware, PlayStation 3,

Cell PlayStation 3 users have been racking up the work units through the built-in Folding At Home client in the console. The PS3 has proved to be particularly effective at folding proteins, doing the job more efficiently than the PC client. Now, IBM and the Mayo Clinic are announcing that the Cell processor can speed up 3D medical imaging by up to 50 times over traditional CPU configurations. While the new uses for the Cell processor might not be directly applicable to gamers, the more usages that can be found for the CPU can drive up demand, possibly leading to more optimizations in the manufacturing process and ultimately driving down the costs of producing the chip.

Read More | Mercury News

IBM Cell Manufacture Hits 65nm

Posted by Christopher Sasaki Categories: Hardware, PlayStation 3,

Cell IBM today announced that the company is now producing a 65 nm version of the Cell Broadband Engine in East Fishkill, New York. The Cell Broadband Engine, of course, powers Sony’s PlayStation 3, and the move to 65 nm promises to help Sony reduce the cost of their expensive console further. Sony has proven to be aggressive in attempting to increase profitability for the PlayStation 3, removing the expensive Emotion Engine chip in Europe at the expense of near-universal compatibility for Playstation 2 games. A 65 nm version of the Xbox 360 processor has been rumored for a while, with the alleged Zephyr revision of the console boasting the new CPU. While this announcement by IBM is a long way from a new CPU integrated in the PS3, this definitely puts Sony on the road to reducing power consumption and component costs for their hardware.

IBM’s full press release continues after the jump.

Click to continue reading IBM Cell Manufacture Hits 65nm