Google just announced Chrome OS, their entry into the operating system world. According to the Google Developer Blog, Chrome OS will be a lightweight, open source OS platform meant to “power computers ranging from small netbooks to full-zize desktop systems,” with the goal being a practically instant-on system that takes you right into the web. Chrome OS will be able to run on x86 and ARM chips, which means 32-bit computers, including Intel Atom machines, can play nice, along with mobile platforms. All-in-all, Google aims to make the Internet the bulk of the operating system, with Chrome OS just providing some supporting architecture. Offline mode will undoubtedly be supported, since it’s built in to the Google Apps suite of products. Google says they are already working with OEMs, and we should see devices that are running Chrome OS hit the market in the second half of 2010.
The competition in the OS space is heating up, and the biggest winner, from where we sit, is going to be the consumers. Game on.
Read More | Chrome OS
The CrunchPad, a mobile web tablet that is completely optimized for web usage, seems to be on the verge of coming to fruition. Bits reports that, according to Mike Arrington, we should expect an official announcement sometime this month, or next month, and that the CrunchPad will be available “as soon as possible.” As it turns out, Mike Arrington, the man behind TechCrunch, has been spending about two-thirds of him time working on the CrunchPad over the last six months alongside a 15-person team from Fusion Garage.
The CrunchPad is an Intel Atom-powered touchscreen tablet, aimed at letting you use the Internet comfortably from it’s 12-inch screen. There is no keyboard (although, you can plug one in) and no mouse. In the simplest terms, you can think of it as a large, 12-inch iPhone that only runs Safari. Except the CrunchPad also supports Flash. The best part, though, is that this device will cost under $300. A 12-inch WebKit-based tablet device, for under $300? Sign me up.
Read More | Bits
The Motorola Karma QA1 is for those who can’t get enough socializing. The slider has a full QWERTY keyboard, a 2.5-inch 240x320 display, 3.6Mbps HSDPA, a 2 megapixel camera, Bluetooth 2.0 support, A-GPS and microSD card slot. Access MySpace, Facebook, email, IM and use its voice memo recording to keep track of it all. AT&T is now selling the Karma for $79.99 after a $50 mail-in rebate, a $39.99 voice plan and $20.00 messaging or data plan.
Read More | AT&T
Now you can hang with your friends shopping online instead of making a trip to the mall. FriendShopper beta is simple and free to sign up and has a drag-and-drop bookmarklet to save and share anything you find on Internet retailers. There are folders for different products and the ability to keep favorites. The official launch will take place July 7, but you can check out their video, sign up now and add your shopping buds.
Read More | FriendShopper beta
In an effort to get even more customers for FiOS, Verizon is offering some incentives. From now until August 15, new customers can sign up for a triple bundle (FiOS Internet with a connection speed of 25/15 Mbps or higher, TV Extreme HD service and Essentials voice service.) They then have their choice of a free Compaq Mini netbook (except for S&H,) retailing at $299.99 for only or a free Flip Ultra camcorder. A triple bundle that includes 15/5 Mbps Internet allows purchase of the netbook for $99.99 or the free cam.
Read More | Verizon
In a recent study from Pew and American Life Project, it was found that those who use the Internet for health information almost doubled in the last couple of years. Frequenters increased from 31% to 60%. The survey group contacted 2,253 people by landline and 502 by cellphone and found that 86% consult a health care professional while 68% ask friends or family. We expect that part of the reason is the high cost of health care these days. What the survey doesn’t say is how many of those are hypochondriacs who tend to jump to WebMD at the first sign of a rash.
Read More | ABC News
Always wanted to be a astronaut but would never pass the high standards? You can still hang with NASA as they are willing to pay volunteers $160.00 per day for lying down and playing games or surfing on a laptop. Travel and accommodations are also provided, as is a bedpan, because you cannot leave your bed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The project, referred to as Pillownaut, is meant to study the effects of micro-gravity.
Read More | New Launches
US troops in Afghanistan can now keep in better contact with their loved ones. The military is launching a Facebook page, Twitter feeds and a YouTube site. Their plan is that it will counter the Taliban, who often publish propaganda on the Internet. They are hoping that soldiers will post stories and photos to better represent their daily lives. So far only in limited testing, the formal launch is this week.
Read More | MSNBC
A couple in New Zealand woke up one morning only to discover that their 3 year-old had accidentally bought a $NZ20,000 Industrial Excavator from the site Trade Me. Mother Sarah Quinlan said that she had received an email from them saying that they hope she loved the mechanical digger. Claiming her daughter doesn’t even like tractors, she managed to convince the seller to take it back. Daughter Pipi has been banned from the computer when alone and her parents removed their auto-login. We think that is one precocious little girl and can’t wait to see what she can do once she is old enough to have her own.
Read More | Pocket-lint
If you have an odd name, you may get locked out of Facebook. Now that the social networking site has over 200 million users, they constantly update a blacklist of names that people cannot use, such as those are obviously fake, like Batman, or some that relate to current events, like Susan Boyle. Even though Facebook was set up to use real names, it sometimes makes mistakes, as in the case of Alicia Istanbul, who got up one day and found her account temporarily canceled. Unfortunately, it may take time and a faxed ID as proof to get your account back if you become a casualty.
Read More | USA Today