Tuesday, December 11, 2012

4 Alasan AR Akan Mengubah Dunia

Sejak tahun 2009, augmented reality (kerap disingkat sebagai AR) telah menjadi topik yang hangat dibicarakan di dunia. Penggunaannya pun semakin meningkat dari hari ke hari.

Augmented reality merupakan sebuah teknologi yang menggabungkan dunia nyata dengan dunia virtual. Dalam bahasa Indonesia dapat disebut sebagai "realita tertambahkan", dengan arti, gambaran dunia nyata diintegrasikan bersama materi-materi virtual, seperti gambar, suara, video, bahkan lokasi.

Penjelasan lebih lengkap mengenai AR dapat dilihat di artikel sebelumnya berjudul "Augmented Reality", Masa Depan Interaktivitas.

Teknologi augmented reality akan mengubah cara pandang manusia terhadap lingkungan di sekitar kita. Mengapa? Ini alasannya:

1. Informasi yang lebih kaya

Di era informasi, manusia mengakses informasi setiap harinya melalui media yang berbeda-beda. Untuk mengakses beberapa informasi mengenai sebuah topik tertentu, diperlukan media yang berbeda-beda dengan keterbatasan penyedia media tersebut.

Augmented reality akan mengubah cara manusia mengakses informasi dan memperkaya informasi-informasi yang tersampaikan. Bayangkan sebuah kacamata yang secara langsung dapat menampilkan letak restoran-restoran terdekat di sekitar kita secara real-time, berikut informasi tipe makanan, harga, dan apakah perlu antre atau tidak.

 

2. Media informasi terbaru

Setiap media yang ada sekarang memiliki keterbatasan masing-masing dalam menampilkan informasi. Media cetak hanya dapat menampilkan informasi berupa tulisan dan gambar, sedangkan media digital dapat menampilkan informasi berupa tulisan, gambar, suara, video.

Augmented reality menjadikan dunia sebagai kanvas media informasi terbaru. Informasi secara langsung ditambahkan pada gambaran dunia nyata.

3. Dinamis dan relatif

Informasi digital yang ditambahkan dengan augmented reality merupakan informasi yang dinamis dan relatif. Dengan kata lain, informasi ini dapat terus berubah sesuai dengan keadaan dan kebutuhan pengguna.

Salah satu contoh penggunaannya adalah pada jejaring sosial yang sedang berkembang. Setiap kali pengguna jejaring sosial memperbarui status atau sekadar shout out, pengguna lainnya dapat melihat keberadaan sekaligus informasi yang diberikan teman-temannya.

Bayangkan informasi yang dapat diakses secara real-time dan dinamis akan memperkaya interaksi manusia dalam dunia digital.

4. Tanpa batas

Perkembangan augmented reality secara garis besar dapat dibagi menjadi 5 tahap, yaitu head-mounted display AR, desktop AR, mobile device AR, AR glasses, dan AR contact lenses.

Sekarang ini perkembangan sudah berada pada tahap kedua dan ketiga, kemudian sesegera mungkin akan masuk ke tahap keempat. Oleh karena itu, area perkembangan augmented reality dapat dibilang masih sangat luas, baik dalam hal bidang-bidang implementasinya, maupun kemampuannya.

 

"Dengan perkembangan augmented reality di dunia, tidak lama lagi teknologi ini akan menjadi bagian dalam kehidupan manusia sehari-hari, menjadi solusi untuk meningkatkan kehidupan manusia sekaligus membawa kebahagiaan kepada setiap penggunanya," ujar Peter Shearer, Managing Director AR&Co, mengenai visi dari perusahaan yang dipimpinnya itu.

Sebagai perusahaan unggulan dalam bidang augmented reality di Asia, AR&Co memiliki pandangan yang sangat yakin terhadap kemajuan bidang tersebut. Hal ini berbanding lurus dengan banyaknya karya-karya augmented reality yang telah dibuat olehnya, terutama di Indonesia, sebagai negara asalnya.
Penulis: Dennis Oswald

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Internet Gratis Google Sudah Tersedia di Indonesia

 Layanan internet gratis milik Google, Free Zone, kini sudah hadir di Indonesia melalui operator seluler Telkomsel. Dikutip dari Trenologi, akses internet cuma-cuma tersebut sudah bisa diakses mulai Rabu (5/12/2012).

Sebelumnya, layanan Free Zone ini baru tersedia di negara Filipina dan Afrika Selatan.

Meski gratis, pengguna Free Zone tidak bisa membuka semua situs. Pengguna hanya bisa mengakses tiga layanan populer Google, yaitu Google Plus, Gmail, dan Google Search.

Dengan menggunakan Google Search, layanan search engine Google, para pengguna dapat mencari konten yang diinginkan secara gratis. Uniknya, pengguna masih diizinkan untuk membuka tautan hasil pencarian dengan cuma-cuma.

Pengguna pun dapat membuka dan membaca pesan elektronik yang ada di Gmail, layanan e-mail milik Google, secara gratis. Namun, untuk membuka file attachment yang biasanya ada di sebuah e-mail, pengguna akan dikenakan biaya.

Pengguna juga bisa mengakses layanan jejaring sosial Google Plus. Nyaris semua fitur Google Plus versi PC, seperti menambah teman di lingkaran pertemanan dan memberikan komentar, dapat dilakukan melalui layanan Free Zone ini.

Namun, layanan ini hanya bisa diakses melalui ponsel dan ponsel pintar. Pengguna tidak bisa memanfaatkan Free Zone untuk mengakses internet gratis melalui perangkat PC desktop dan tablet.

Layanan ini juga hanya berlaku di browser bawaan ponsel, bukan dari browser pihak ketiga.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Keamanan Bermasalah, Facebook di Eropa akan Ditutup

Dublin : Masalah keamanan di Facebook selalu menjadi sorotan. Akibat privacy yang rentan dibajak, beberapa Lembaga Kemanan Austria berencana menggugat Facebook.

Media AP mewartakan, Rabu (5/12/2012), lembaga keamanan itu menamakan dirinya Europe vs. Facebook. Mereka akan membawa masalah keamanan di jejaring sosial Facebook ke Pengadilan Irlandia, pusat Facebook Eropa berada. Gugatan ini datang akibat banyaknya komplain, total 22 laporan, atas keamanan Facebook yang rentan diretas.

"Kami telah memperingatkan pihak Facebook untuk meningkatkan keamanannya. namun, FB hanya meningkatkan keamanannya hanya 10 persen saja," kata Max Schrems, jsuru bicara kelompok Europe vs. Facebook.

Dalam laporan sebanyak 70 halaman, kelompok itu membeberkan rentannya keamanan di FB. Jika FB tak meningkatkan keamanannya, mereka menunut FB ditutup di Eropa.

Privasi Facebooker memang sering diinvasi dengan banyaknya penawaran yang tanpa sengaja akhirnya membeberkan data pribadi pengguna FB. Laporan dari Consumer Reports menunjukkan bahwa ada peningkatan secara keseluruhan dalam masalah digital di FB, seperti pencurian ID dan pelanggaran keamanan lainnya.

Bukan kali ini saja Facebook terganjal masalah hukum. Sebelumnya, Yahoo Inc. menggugat situs jejaring Facebook atas tuduhan melanggar lebih dari 10 hak paten yang mencakup metode dan sistem untuk iklan di situ. Ini adalah perang besar pertama di antara kedua perusahaan teknologi di media sosial

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Aplikasi Gmail for Android 4.0 dan 4.1 Mendapatkan Update Mayor

Saat ini Google telah merilis update mayor dari aplikasi Gmail for Android yang berjalan di Android versi 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) dan 4.1 (Jelly Bean) demikian dilaporkan laman GSMarena, Selasa (4/12/12).

Update tersebut memungkinkan perangkat dapat 'menyegarkan diri' terhadap email client mereka dari Google Play store. Fitur terbaru yang paling penting dari update kali ini adalam kemampuan untuk menyesuaikan pesan agar sesuai dengan ukuran layar yang digunakan oleh perangkat. Sebuah gerakan 'swipe-to-archive' juga akan bisa dijumpai pada update Gmail for Android 4.0 dan 4.1.

Untuk melakukan zoom terhadap pesan yang Anda terima, Anda harus mengaktifkan fitur dari pengaturan Gmail.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Siap-siap, Ultrabook Layar Sentuh Segera Menyerbu

Bryan Deaner (eno/inet)
Jakarta - Demi menghadirkan sensasi menggunakan tablet PC pada komputer jinjing, Intel menyatakan siap untuk menghadirkan jajaran ultrabook dengan kemampuan layar sentuh. Seperti apa?

Komputer jinjing dengan layar sentuh memang masih jarang ditemui di pasaran, tapi bukan berarti tidak ada. Intel mengklaim punya puluhan model laptop dari berbagai vendor yang sudah menggunakan layar sentuh.

"Dari 140 model ultrabook yang ada, 40 di antaranya sudah menggunakan layar sentuh. Saya yakin ke depannya akan lebih banyak lagi," kata Bryan Deaner, Brand Manager Intel, saat ditemui di kantor Intel Indonesia, Kamis (22/11/2012).

Ultrabook dengan layar sentuh sepertinya cukup menjanjikan. Pengguna bisa bekerja dengan keyboard, tapi juga bisa berinteraksi lebih banyak dengan layar sentuh. Dan semua itu dijanjikan bakal berjalan mulus pada sistem yang sudah menggunakan prosesor Intel seri Core i.

Komputer jinjing jenis itu pun diprediksi akan menjadi tren dan segera membajiri Tanah Air dalam waktu dekat. Terlebih lagi beberapa produsen komputer seperti Lenovo, Dell, Sony, Samsung, dan lainnya sudah mulai memamerkan perangkat tersebut.

Soal harga memang masih tergolong di kelas premium, yakni sekitar USD 599-699. Itu semua tergantung dari model, spesifikasi, dan fitur yang ditawarkan masing-masing vendor.

"Soal harga memang sepenuhnya ditentukan oleh vendor, tapi kami tetap merekomendasikan harga yang tepat tanpa perlu fungsionalnya. Semoga ini menjadi kado natal yang indah," tandas Deaner.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Hate illegal robocalls? FTC offers $50,000 to help stop them

Editor's note: Amy Gahran writes about mobile tech for CNN.com. She is a writer and media consultant based in Boulder, Colorado, whose blog, Contentious.com
, explores how people communicate in the online age.
(CNN) -- During election season, phones across the country ring with more unsolicited, automated calls than usual. So it's especially timely that on Thursday the U.S. Federal Trade Commission held a Robocall Summit
to "explore innovations designed to trace robocalls, prevent wrongdoers from faking caller ID data, and stop unwanted calls."
A "robocall" is an automated phone call that plays a prerecorded message. If you hear a live person and it's a telemarketing, advocacy, or survey call, it could still be illegal if it's unsolicited, but it's not a robocall. Robocalls from political campaigns or get-out-the-vote efforts are allowed (and legal) under the FTC's Telemarketing Sales Rule
, as well as under most state robocall laws (except when made to cell phone numbers and a few other exceptions).
Unsolicited commercial telemarketing calls are illegal, and rampant, in the U.S. According to new FTC statistics
, this problem is getting worse, fast. In the last year, the number of consumer complaints about unwanted telemarketing calls soared 70% to an all-time record of 3,840,572 during fiscal year 2012.
Fed up with the phone spam, over 217 million Americans
have already added themselves to the National Do-Not-Call Registry. But this only solves part of the problem.
Much phone spam comes from companies, groups and scammers that choose to ignore the law. Also, a large proportion of consumer phone spam complaints cannot be investigated because of evasion measures such as "spoofing" -- or hiding -- the originating phone number or caller ID information.
To address the robocall problem, the FTC announced a contest at the Summit to find technological ways to curb illegal robocalls. The FTC Robocall Challenge
challenges the public to suggest plans to block illegal robocalls on landlines and mobile phones. Ideas must include a technical proposal -- so options to, say, prevent caller ID spoofing would qualify, but nontechnical suggestions such as "give phone spammers the death penalty" are not eligible.
The winning solution will receive a $50,000 cash prize, as well as opportunities for promotion, exposure, and recognition by the FTC. Entrants retain ownership of their proposed solutions.
If you're interested in entering, the deadline for entries is January 17, 2013. The winner will be announced April 1, 2013. (Hopefully people won't think it's an April Fool's Day joke.)
For now, here's what to do if you get an unsolicited commercial phone call -- whether a robocall or from a live person:
1. Hang Up. Do not press 1 or any other numbers to get off the list.
2. Consider blocking the number.
3. File a complaint with DoNotCall.gov
. It helps, but isn't necessary, to have the number from which the call was initiated.
Remember that political and get-out-the-vote robocalls are legal, so there's no point in filing complaints about these with DoNotCall.gov. However if these calls really annoy you, then you might consider complaining about them to your government representatives.
The opinions expressed in this post are solely those of Amy Gahran.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Apparently This Matters: The Boyfriend Pillow

Editor's note: Each week in "Apparently This Matters," CNN's Jarrett Bellini
applies his warped sensibilities to trending topics in social media and random items of interest on the interwebs.
(CNN) -- As you struggle to read this with that one sleepy eye just barely open, you're probably deep into your post-Thanksgiving tryptophan coma, sitting peacefully on the sofa with a laptop balanced by your gut. Maybe you're still trying to rationalize the fact that your projectile shirt button flew across the dinner table and killed Uncle Dave.
"At least he died so I could have more gravy."
"He would've wanted it that way."
But don't worry. Nobody blames you for murdering Uncle Dave; everyone's just too happy to see your sweet punim
back at home. They love you, and it's good to spend quality time with your family during Thanksgiving. Besides, if you get it over with now you won't have to suffer again for another year.
Think of it like an annual physical. Just turn your head to the left and give Nana a kiss.
Of course, the only real alternative to being fat, sleepy and useless in the living room is to actually get out of the house and do some early holiday shopping with the masses. Which is a terribly misguided idea because (A) it involves being around other people and (B) putting on pants. Most retailers sort of require that.
The bottom line is that there's no real point being out in public at this stage of the food coma. Stay home. Embrace the chemicals. Be lazy. And, so long as you've got the laptop out, you might as well join us in 2012 and do all your shopping the way Al Gore intended: Online, half-awake and fully bloated. America!
And, hey, just to make it even easier, I've already uncovered a great trending gift that, while not necessarily new, has gained renewed popularity on the interwebs.
It's called the Boyfriend Pillow
.
Essentially, this thing serves as a bedtime substitute for the missing man in your life. Feel the warmth and security as you curl its plush arm around your body and rest your head on the half-chested slab of memory foam that oddly happens to be wearing a full button-down shirt to bed. Did he just come home drunk from happy hour? Again?
Oh, but you don't care. You still love him.
"Mmmm, let's go to sleep. What do you say, sexy Boyfriend Pillow?"
"I want a Hot Pocket."
For those who prefer the comfort of a woman in bed, they also make the Girlfriend Pillow
. It's essentially the same idea as the male version, but this one has large, and astonishingly disproportionate, memory foam breasts.
The other major difference is that (shocker) the Girlfriend Pillow isn't wearing a shirt, because, clearly, this was designed by a man. And likely one who reads Maxim.
So, if you're actually interested in buying one of these pillows, both the male and female versions run about $30 and are sold by a company called Deluxe Comfort
. Even if you're not interested, you might still find amusement from the descriptions on their website.
In promoting the Boyfriend Pillow, they write: "This fun and cozy snuggle pillow is excellent for people whose partner is away on military leave or work absence. Singles, who desire to feel the touch of a man, without actually having to be with one, will love it too."
It's the second part that concerns me: "...without actually having to be with one."
Are we men really that bad?
Let's just allow their product overview for the Girlfriend Pillow to answer that: "...maybe you enjoy a better sleep when you locate your neck in your girlfriend or wife's breast."
Confirmed. It appears we are, in fact, horrible people. But at least we're consistent.
So, if giving weird, possibly inappropriate gifts is your thing, hop online before they're all gone on Cyber Monday. And maybe get one of these for your dear, sad auntie.
Perhaps she'll enjoy having someone next to her in bed again.
Of course, there's no replacing Uncle Dave.
The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Jarrett Bellini.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Ilmuwan Ciptakan Kacamata Anti Jet Lag

 Perasaan lelah dan disorientasi akibat jet lag kini bisa diatasi berkat kacamata "pengendali waktu" pertama di dunia.

Kacamata teknologi tinggi ini memancarkan cahaya hijau lembut yang dikatakan bekerja pada jam biologis manusia untuk mengubah pola tidur.

Dengan menggunakan perangkat, yang disebut Re-Timer, penumpang pesawat udara dapat melangkah turun dari pesawat dengan perasaan segar, bahkan setelah penerbangan dari Inggris ke Australia, kata para peneliti tidur yang membuat alat ini.

Menurut penemunya, Profesor Leon Lack, kacamata ini juga bisa membantu penderita insomnia, para pekerja malam, dan membantu para remaja bangun di pagi hari.

"Cahaya dari Re-Timer merangsang bagian otak yang bertanggung jawab untuk mengatur jam biologis tubuh selama 24 jam," kata Profesor Lack, dari Universitas Flindrers di Adelaide, Australia Selatan

Friday, November 23, 2012

Hasil Studi, Sayap Awalnya Bukan untuk Terbang

BRISTOL, (PRLM).- Bulu awalnya dikembangkan untuk menjaga burung tetap hangat dan bukan untuk terbang, sebuah studi baru terungkap.

Para peneliti menemukan, bulu pada dinosaurus prasejarah, yang kemudian berevolusi menjadi burung, tersusun dalam beberapa lapisan yang berfungsi sebagai penyekat dan menyimpan panas.

Sebuah studi yang dilakukan Universitas Bristol, Yale, dan Calgary menemukan bahwa burung prasejarah memiliki versi sayap yang sangat primitif, dan itu tidak sampai jutaan tahun kemudian mereka mulai berevolusi untuk penampilan dan kamuflase, dan akhirnya untuk memungkinkan dinosaurus terbang.

Alih-alih fleksibel, bulu aerodinamis makhluk ini memiliki lapisan yang kaku yang bertindak sebagai airfoil sederhana dan dapat digunakan untuk meluncur terbatas.

Namun selama jutaan tahun, seleksi alam memodifikasinya menjadi sayap berbulu yang sangat efektif dan dengan cepat mengubah rentang, bentuk, dan daerah.

Dr Jakob Vinther, dari Universitas Bristol mengatakan, penelitian menunjukkan gambaran yang rumit tentang bagaimana bulu dan burung berevolusi. "Kami mulai mendapatkan gambaran yang rumit tentang bagaimana bulu dan burung berevolusi dari dinosaurus," ujarnya seperti dilansir Mail Online.

"Kami sekarang melihat bahwa bulu berevolusi awalnya untuk penghangat."
sumber pikiran-rakyat.com

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

India Launches Satellite toughest Success

New Delhi: India has successfully launched its heaviest communications satellite GSAT-10 on Saturday (29/9). India state space agency said the satellite weighing 3400 pounds was made ​​in French Guiana has now been successfully orbiting in space.

"Vehicle launcher off at 02:48 local time, after the countdown going smoothly for 11 hours and 30 minutes," said Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO).

Reported by Xinhua page on Sunday (30/9), satellite communication mengobrit to carry 30 transponders unit with a navigation system component Gagan into space. After the success of the satellite orbit, ISRO has plans to use the Ariane-5 rocket the European Space Agency to launch another satellite ready for launch which is expected in November. (MEL)

Monday, October 22, 2012

Nexus 10, New Tablet from Google

California: not to be outdone by Apple, Google and Samsung will also release a new tablet on 29 October. It was announced directly to the media, as reported by The Verge, Monday (22/10).

When Apple is ready to launch a 7-inch iPad Mini, Google will carry a 10-inch tablet, codenamed Manta. Sources within the site The Verge estimate is called Nexus tablet 10 [read: Apple: iPad Mini Released October 23].

Reportedly, in addition to having a wider screen than the Nexus 7, this new tablet will have a screen resolution of 2,560 x 1,600 and dense 300 ppi. Sources also indicate if the Nexus 10 will be pinned Android software version 4.2.

Meanwhile, according to CNet, in addition to tablet Nexus 10, the giant search engine company will release 4 and the Nexus mobile phone operating system Android 4.2. (ANS)

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Exclusive: White House review finds no evidence of spying by Huaweisources

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Patung Buddha Ribuan Tahun dari Batu Meteor

Patung Buddha berusia sekitar seribu tahun yang dipamerkan di London, Inggris, ternyata dibuat dari batu meteor yang jatuh ke Bumi. Seperti dilansir dari Dailymail, Kamis (27/9), patung itu awalnya ditemukan oleh tim ekspedisi Nazi pada 1938. Berdasarkan penelitian, patung itu dibuat dari meteorit yang menabrak Bumi sekitar 15.000 tahun yang lalu.

Patung itu ditemukan pada tahun 1938 oleh sebuah tim ekspedisi ilmuwan Jerman yang dipimpin oleh ahli zoologi terkenal Ernst Schafer. Ekspedisi ini didukung oleh Kepala Nazi Heinrich Himmler dan seluruh tim ekspedisi yang diyakini telah menjadi anggota Nazi.

"Patung ini dipahat dari sebuah fragmeni meteorit yang menabrak daerah perbatasan antara Mongolia dan Siberia sekitar 15 ribu tahun yang lalu," kata Dr Elmar Buchner dari Universitas Stuttgart.

Sementara puing-puing pertama meteor serupa, secara resmi ditemukan pada tahun 1913. Peneliti percaya bahwa fragmen meteorit ini terkumpul berabad-abad sebelumnya.

Tim peneliti mampu mengklasifikasikan patung itu terbuat dari ataxite, meteorit kelas besi yang langka karena mengandung nikel. Meteorit terbesar yang pernah diketahui adalah Hoba Namibia, meteorit ataxite yang bisa berbobot lebih dari 60 ton.

Jika usia penelitian itu benar, maka harga patung itu tak ternilai lagi. Bahkan, peneliti masih belum bisa memperkirakan secara nominal patung Buddha tersebut. (Vin)
sumber Liputan6.com

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Samsung wins reconsideration of Galaxy Tab sales ban

Nemesis Mobil Listrik Tercepat di Inggris

Mobil sedan bertenaga baterai memecahkan rekor kendaraan listrik tercepat di Inggris. Mobil bernama Nemesis itu bisa mencapai 239 km/jam. Mobil Nemesis merupakan hasil modifikasi dari Lotus Exige yang dibeli dari situs lelang online eBay.

Mobil tersebut didesain dan dikembangkan oleh tim teknisi dari Inggris dan dikendarai oleh Nick Ponting, seorang pegawai pemasaran properti.

"Luar biasa. Mobilnya sangat enak dikendarai," ujarnya usai mengetes Nemesis di sebuah lapangan udara Elvington, York, Inggris utara.

Nemesis dites dengan kecepatan rata-rata 148,419 mil/jam atau sekitar 238,8 km/jam. Tenaga Nemesis berasal dari turbin angin produksi Ecotricity. Rekor lama kecepatan mobil listrik dipegang Don Wales yang memacu kendaraan hingga 220 km/jam.

Rekor baru yang dicatat Ponting dengan Nemesis masih akan diverifikasi oleh asosiasi olahraga otomotif sebelum diumumkan secara resmi.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Baru Chip kaca kuarsa oleh Hitachi bisa menyimpan data Anda selamanya

Raksasa elektronik Jepang Hitachi meluncurkan sekilas di masa depan jangka panjang penyimpanan digital dan itu sepotong kaca.

Ini dua sentimeter persegi dan dua milimeter tebal erat dari kaca kuarsa dapat menyimpan 40 megabyte data per inci persegi. Teknologi baru menyimpan data biner dengan menggunakan sinar laser untuk menciptakan titik dalam lembaran tipis dari kaca kuarsa yang kemudian dapat dibaca menggunakan mikroskop optik terhubung ke monitor dengan membaca data perangkat lunak. Selain itu, chip adalah sekuat mereka datang. Kaca kuarsa merupakan bahan yang sangat stabil dan tangguh dan dapat menahan kondisi bermusuhan seperti air (tsunami), panas (api suhu tinggi dan panas hingga 1.000 derajat Celcius selama dua jam), gelombang radio dan bahan kimia yang paling. Jadi, secara teoritis chip kaca Hitachi akan mampu menyimpan informasi digital untuk beberapa ratus juta tahun.

Sementara ini hanya prototipe, chip yang dikembangkan dari teknologi piring kaca kuarsa bisa memiliki potensi nyata untuk menggantikan CD dan hard drive yang memiliki umur beberapa dekade ke abad paling banyak.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Google Maps Digarap 7.000 Karyawan



Google Maps selama ini dianggap sebagai layanan peta digital yang terbilang akurat. Dalam pengerjaannya, Google mengerahkan 7.100 karyawan untuk menggarap Google Maps.

Hal ini diungkapkan oleh dua karyawan Google yang tak mau disebut namanya kepada portal berita Business Insider. Ada 1.100 karyawan yang bekerja penuh waktu, dan 6.000 kontraktor bekerja memetakan Google Maps.

Apa saja yang dilakukan karyawan sebanyak itu? Sumber itu mengatakan, ada yang membuat tampilan jalan dari jalur darat dan pesawat terbang. Ada karyawan yang bertugas menggambar peta, mengoreksi daftar lokasi, dan menambahkan daftar bangunan atau lokasi baru.

Meski terbilang akurat, namun Apple memutuskan untuk membuang Google Maps dari sistem operasi iOS versi 6. Apple mengembangkan layanan peta digital sendiri bernama Apple Maps, yang dikerjakan bersama beberapa perusahaan yang bergerak di bidang peta digital dan navigasi.

Sayangnya, Apple Maps menuai banyak kritik pengguna perangkat mobile Apple. Layanan ini dinilai belum sedetail dan seakurat Google Maps.

Hingga kini Google belum merilis aplikasi mandiri Google Maps untuk iOS.
sumber KOMPAS com

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

10 Tahun Perjalanan Firefox



Pengguna internet tentu kenal dengan aplikasi peramban (browser) Firefox yang dibuat Yayasan Mozilla (The Mozilla Foundation). Firefox merupakan produk yang unik, karena ia browser yang bersifat open source (sumber terbuka).

Mozilla merilis kode sumber pemrograman Firefox kepada publik. Hal ini membuat masyarakat umum, atau relawan open source, bisa turut mengembangkan Firefox. Termasuk, membuat alat bantu (add-ons) untuk Firefox. Keberadaan add-ons yang beragam, baik yang dikembangkan oleh karyawan Mozilla maupun masyarakat umum, telah menjadi ciri khas tersendiri bagi browser berlogo rubah api itu.

Pada 23 September 2012 lalu, Firefox genap berusia 10 tahun. Ada banyak prestasi yang telah dicapai Mozilla berkat produk Firefox. Berikut ini sejarah singkat Mozilla dan prestasi mereka:

31 Maret 1998


Para programer Netscape memulai proyek open source. Mereka menyebut proyek ini sebagai Mozilla, sebuah kode nama dari browser Netscape Navigator yang sangat populer pada era 1990-an. Mozilla berasal dari kata "mosaic" (browser yang populer tahun 1990-an) dan "killer".

23 September 2002

Browser bernama Phoenix 0.1 dirilis. Produk ini merupakan cikal bakal browser yang kemudian dikenal sebagai Firefox.

15 Juli 2003

The Mozilla Foundation didirikan. Yayasan yang berkantor pusat di Mountain View, Amerika Serikat, ini merupakan organisasi nirlaba yang memegang prinsip: "Web adalah sumber daya publik yang harus selalu dikembangkan dan dilindungi, bukan komoditas untuk dijual."

Dalam situs web-nya, Mozilla berkomitmen untuk mempromosikaan keterbukaan, inovasi, dan kesempatan di dunia maya.

15 Juni 2004

Mozilla meluncurkan Galeri Add-ons, yang di menyediakan alat bantu ekstensi, tema, dan plug-in yang bisa digunakan pengguna untuk memperkaya browser Firefox.

9 November 2004

Mozilla memperkenalkan Firefox 1.0, sebuah browser versi lengkap. Untuk menyambut kehadirannya, para penggemar Mozilla memasang iklan satu halaman penuh di suratkabar harian The New York Times.

12 Agustus 2006

Para penggemar Firefox, yang sebagian besar adalah mahasiswa Oregon State, AS, membuat crop-circle seluas 220 kaki bergambar logo Firefox di ladang gandum dekat Amity, Oregon, AS.

Penggemar membuat crop circle logo Firefox di ladang gandum dekat Amity, Oregon, AS

21 Februari 2008

Total unduhan Firefox mencapai lebih dari 500 juta kali.

17 Juni 2008

Mozilla merilis Firefox 3.0. Dalam waktu 24 jam, Firefox 3.0 diunduh oleh 8 juta kali. Belum pernah ada sebuah perangkat lunak yang dapat mencapai prestasi ini. Guiness World Record menobatkan Firefox 3.0 sebagai "Perangkat Lunak Aplikasi dengan Unduhan Terbanyak dalam 24 Jam."

8 Februari 2011

Mozilla menegaskan komitmen untuk melindungi privasi pengguna, dengan merilis versi beta Firefox 4 yang dilengkapi fitur "Do Not Track".

29 Maret 2011

Mozilla merilis Firefox untuk perangkat mobile Android. Browser ini menyediakan pilihan 10 bahasa.

April 2011


Yayasan mempercepat jadwal perilisan versi baru Firefox setiap enam pekan sekali. Dengan jadwal ini, selalu ada empat versi Firefox yang sedang dikerjakan dalam waktu tertentu.

Pengguna dapat menjajal versi "Nightly" yang memiliki pembaruan tapi belum sepenuhnya diperbaiki, lalu ada versi "Aurora" yang lebih stabil, kemudian versi "Beta" yang hadir sebelum versi penuhnya.

26 Juli 2012

Total unduhan add-ons melebihi 3 miliar kali. Mozilla mengklaim, mereka memiliki lebih dari 17 ribu pengguna yang juga membuat add-ons untuk Firefox.

23 September 2012

Lebih dari 450 juta orang menggunakan Firefox. Sekitar 40% kode pemrograman ditulis oleh para relawan open source. Firefox untuk komputer pribadi tersedia dalam 75 bahasa dan lebih dari separuhnya menggunakan versi bahasa non-Inggris.
sumber tekno kompas com

Monday, September 24, 2012

LG Luncurkan Ponsel Berkamera Teraktivasi Suara

LG Electronics belum lama ini mengungkap lebih jauh telepon seluler (ponsel) pintar Optimus G yang mengandalkan fitur kamera dengan aktivasi suara untuk merebut pangsa pasar ponsel pintar yang didominasi Apple Incorporated dan Samsung Electronics.

Bisnis perangkat komunikasi genggam LG, mengalami pelambatan dan gagal merebut konsumen dari pemain lain seperti Motorola, HTC, ZTE, dan Huawei.

LG Optimus G akan dijual di Korea Selatan pada pekan terakhir September seharga satu juta won (sekitar Rp 8,5 juta) dan akan diikuti pasar ponsel Jepang dan AS.

Ponsel pintar bersistem operasi Android 4.0 itu mengusung kamera 13 megapiksel dan layar 4,7 inci dengan prosesor Qualcomm quad-core 1,5 Ghz.

Optimus G akan berhadapan dengan jajaran Motorola RAZR, yang diluncurkan awal September, sebagai sesama pengguna sistem operasi Android di samping Nokia Lumia 920 yang mengusung sistem operasi Windows Phone.

Ponsel dengan kapasitas penyimpanan data hingga 32 giga bit dan kartu RAM 2GB itu telah dikenalkan sejak akhir Agustus di Korea.
sumber http://tekno.liputan6.com

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Fitur Terbaru di iOS 6

Apple meluncurkan sistem operasi iOS edisi terbaru untuk iPhone, iPad, atau pun iPod Anda. Jika gadget dapat support, begitu disinkron ke iTunes, Anda akan langsung ditawarkan untuk meng-update ke iOS 6. Sistem operasi ini memiliki lebih dari 200 fitur baru. Di antaranya:

    Peta (Apple Maps)

    Peta berbasis vektor yang didesain Apple
    Tuntunan navigasi dengan petunjuk arah yang diucapkan pada iPhone 5, iPhone 4S, iPad Wi-Fi + Seluler (generasi ke-2 dan ke-3)
    Informasi lalu lintas langsung
    Flyover untuk realistik foto, tampilan 3D interaktif dari wilayah metro utama di iPhone 5, iPhone 4S, iPad (generasi ke-3), dan iPod touch (generasi ke-5)
    Hasil pencarian lokal dengan foto, penilaian, ulasan, dan penawaran Yelp yang tersedia
    Integrasi Siri untuk meminta arah dan mencari tempat di sepanjang rute

    Perbaikan Siri

    Olahraga: skor, status pemain, jadwal game, daftar nama tim, dan klasemen liga untuk bisbol, bola basket, football, sepak bola, dan hoki
    Film: trailer, pertunjukan, ulasan, dan fakta
    Restoran: reservasi, ulasan, foto, dan informasi
    Mengirim Tweet
    Memposting ke Facebook
    Meluncurkan aplikasi
    Eyes Free pada mobil yang didukung
    Pencarian lokal tersedia di negara yang didukung Siri (ketersediaan mungkin terbatas selama peluncuran awal)

    Dukungan negara dan bahasa tambahan

    Kanada (Bahasa Inggris dan Bahasa Prancis Kanada), China (Bahasa Mandarin), Hong Kong (Bahasa Kanton), Italia (Bahasa Italia), Korea (Bahasa Korea), Meksico (Bahasa Spanyol), Spanyol (Bahasa Spanyol), Swiss (Bahasa Italia, Bahasa Prancis, Bahasa Jerman), Taiwan (Bahasa Mandarin), AS (Bahasa Spanyol). Didukung pada iPhone 5, iPhone 4S, iPad (generasi ke-3), dan iPod touch (generasi ke-5)

    Integrasi Facebook

    Akses menyeluruh dari Pengaturan
    Memposting dari Foto, Safari, Peta, App Store, iTunes, Game Center, Pusat Pemberitahuan, dan Siri
    Menambahkan lokasi dan memilih audiens untuk tiap posting
    Melihat foto profil Facebook yang terbaru dan informasi kontak di Kontak
    Melihat acara dan daftar ulang tahun di Facebook di Kalender
    Menyukai konten dan melihat Penyukaan teman Anda di App Store dan iTunes Store
    Stream Foto Bersama
    Membagikan foto tertentu ke orang-orang yang Anda pilihTeman dapat melihat foto di aplikasi Foto, iPhoto, dan Apple TV
    Teman dapat menyukai dan menuliskan komentar ke tiap foto

    Passbook

    Satu tempat untuk boarding pass, kartu penyimpanan, tiket film dan pass lainnya
    Tampilan kode bar untuk naik ke pesawat, membeli kopi, menonton film, dan tindakan lainnya
    Pass ditampilkan di Layar Terkunci berdasarkan waktu atau lokasi
    Pass dapat diperbarui secara otomatis
    Didukung di iPhone dan iPod touch

    Perbaikan FaceTime

    FaceTime melalui dukungan seluler untuk iPhone 5, iPhone 4S, dan iPad Wi-Fi + Seluler (generasi ke-3)
    Menerima panggilan FaceTime calls, yang dikirim ke nomor telepon iPhone, di iPad dan iPod touch Anda

    Perbaikan Telepon

    Jangan Ganggu untuk menahan panggilan masuk dan pemberitahuan
    Pilihan 'Balas dengan pesan' saat menolak panggilan
    Pilihan 'Ingatkan saya nanti' berdasarkan waktu atau lokasi saat menolak panggilan

    Perbaikan Mail

    Kotak surat VIP untuk mengakses pesan dengan cepat dari orang penting
    Kotak surat email yang dibenderai
    Memasukkan foto video saat membuat email
    Membuka dokumen Office yang dilindungi dengan kata sandi
    Tarik ke bawah untuk merefresh kotak surat
    Tanda tangan per akun

Masih ada sejumlah bocoran fitur lainnya.
sumber http://tekno.liputan6.com/read/439134/fitur-terbaru-di-ios-6

Many US stores report being sold out of iPhone 5s

Friday, September 21, 2012

Ericsson Pasok Infrastruktur LTE SingTel di Singapura



Perusahaan penyedia perangkat telekomunikasi Ericsson menjalin kemitraan dengan operator seluler SingTel, untuk memperluas cakupan jaringan LTE di Singapura, Senin (17/9/2012). Ericsson menyediakan peralatan dan solusi telekomunikasi Long Term Evolution (LTE) di frekuensi 1.800MHz dan 2.600MHz.

Solusi yang akan diberi Ericsson antara lain: multi standar jaringan akses radio RBS 6000, Evolved Packet Core dan Evolved Packet Gateway di RSK 8000 Smart Service Router.

CEO Consumer Singapore SingTel Yuen Kuan Moo mengatakan, jaringan LTE SingTel ditargetkan dapat mencakup 80% kawasan Singapura pada akhir 2012. Dan target pada awal 2013, jaringan LTE SingTel diharap telah mencakup seluruh kawasan Singapura.

"Pembangunan ini kami lakukan untuk memenuhi kebutuhan konsumen, dan meningkatkan produktivitas kerja pelanggan," kata Kuan Moo.

Penetrasi penggunaan smartphone di Singapura mengalami peningkat tinggi. Data Ericsson ConsumerLab baru-baru ini mencatat, Singapura menempati posisi pertama dalam hal kepemilikan smartphone (penetrasi 74%) dan posisi kedua pada kepemilikan tablet (31% penetrasi) secara global.

Menurut Kuan Moo, pertumbuhan trafik data dari perangkat mobile ini memaksa SingTel untuk meningkatkan kapasitas dan kecepatan data internet melalui jaringan LTE.

Tak hanya jaringan LTE, SingTel mengklaim juga melakukan upgrade jaringan 3G hingga kecepatan 42MHz menggunakan teknologi Double Carrier (DC-HSPA).

Hubungan kerjasama SingTel dengan Ericsson telah terjalin lama, sejak penyelenggaraan jaringan 2G di Singapura. "Ericsson telah menjadi mitra SingTel untuk penyebaran infrastruktur jaringan," kata Nicholas Seow, President and Country Manager Ericsson for Singapore and Brunei.

Ia menambahkan, kerjasama Ericsson dan SingTel meliputi instalasi infrastruktur hingga jasa optimalisasi radio.

Ericsson telah menandatangani kontrak 88 infrastruktur LTE di 38 negara di 5 benua. Dengan ini, Ericsson mengklaim menguasai pangsa pasar broadband dan mobile LTE, yang mecakup 305 juta pelanggan dari total 455 juta pelanggan LTE secara global.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Hal-hal yang Perlu Diketahui Tentang LTE

Perusahaan telekomunikasi dan operator seluler di negara maju sedang gencar menawarkan layanan jaringan nirkabel LTE. Begitupun produsen perangkat mobile, makin giat menawarkan produk yang mendukung jaringan LTE.

LTE disebut-sebut sebagai jaringan nirkabel tercepat saat ini, sebagai penerus jaringan 3G. LTE bahkan diklaim sebagai jaringan nirkabel yang paling cepat pertumbuhannya.

Jaringan LTE hingga saat ini belum tersedia di Indonesia. Sehingga, tak sedikit masyarakat yang belum mengetahui apa itu LTE.

Long Term Evolution, atau LTE, merupakan standar baru untuk meningkatkan kapasitas dan kecepatan jaringan saat ini. LTE menggunakan radio yang berbeda, namun tetap menggunakan dasar jaringan GSM / EDGE dan UMTS / HSPA. LTE sering disebut dengan istilah 4G (generasi keempat), untuk membedakannya dengan jaringan 3G.

LTE pertama kali diadopsi oleh operator seluler TeliaSonera di Stockholm dan Oslo pada 14 Desember 2009.

Kecepatan LTE

Kecepatan maksimum LTE bisa mencapai 299.6Mbps untuk mengunduh dan 75.4Mbps untuk mengunggah. Namun, operator seluler yang telah menyediakan jaringan ini, masih membatasi kapasitas dan kecepatan untuk pelanggannya. Pemerintahan di suatu negara juga punya cara yang berbeda mengatur pengalokasian rentang pita frekuensi.

Mengapa frekuensi LTE berbeda di setiap negara?

Pada dasarnya LTE bisa berjalan di seluruh frekuensi. Namun, penyelenggaraan jaringan LTE di setiap negara, bisa jadi berada di spektrum frekuensi yang berbeda. Hal ini disebabkan oleh ketersediaan spektrum frekuensi yang diatur oleh pemerintah dan operator seluler yang mendapatkan lisensi LTE.

Selain itu, beberapa frekuensi juga telah digunakan untuk layanan lain. Di Indonesia misalnya, frekuensi 700MHz digunakan untuk siaran TV analog, dan frekuensi 2.600MHz, dipakai untuk layanan televisi satelit berlangganan.

Ini menjadi salah satu alasan, mengapa frekuensi LTE di setiap negara bisa jadi tidak sama. Sehingga, negara dan operator seluler memilih untuk menyelenggarakan LTE di frekuensi yang tersedia.

Frekuensi yang umum digunakan untuk LTE

Di Asia, frekuensi 1.800 MHz dan 2.600 MHz menjadi frekuensi yang umum digunakan untuk penyelenggaraan LTE. Frekuensi ini digunakan oleh Singapura, Hong Kong, Korea Selatan dan beberapa negara Eropa.

Di Jepang dan Amerika Serikat, LTE berjalan di frekuensi 700MHz atau 2.100MHz.

Sekedar catatan, beberapa negara juga menggunakan frekuensi 800MHz dan 850MHz untuk LTE.

Smartphone LTE belum bisa digunakan secara global

Sering dijumpai sebuah smartphone atau tablet LTE tidak dapat mengaktifkan jaringan LTE-nya di suatu negara.

Tablet iPad generasi 3 misalnya, tidak dapat menjalankan LTE di Australia. Hal ini disebabkan cip antena radio di iPad generasi 3 tidak mendukung jaringan LTE di frekuensi tertentu.

Tak hanya iPad, Apple juga membuat iPhone 5 model GSM dalam dua versi dukungan frekuensi LTE.

Pertama, iPhone 5 (GSM) Model A1429 yang mendukung jaringan LTE di frekuensi 2.100MHz, 1800Hmz, dan 850MHz. Namun, ia tak mendukung LTE di frekuensi 700MHz.

Kedua, iPhone 5 (GSM) Model A1428 mendukung jaringan LTE di frekuensi 700MHz. Nampaknya, Apple akan mengirimkan iPhone 5 model ini untuk Amerika Serikat dan Kanada saja.

Namun, seiring banyaknya operator seluler yang menyediakan jaringan LTE, tak menutup kemungkinan para produsen smartphone dan tablet akan membekali cip radio universal untuk produknya agar mendukung jaringan LTE di seluruh frekuensi.

Biaya masih mahal

Harga berlangganan layanan LTE saat ini memang relatif lebih mahal. Wajar saja, LTE memberi kecepatan akses data yang lebih cepat ketimbang 3G.

Tak sedikit pelanggan LTE di negara maju, yang sangat memperhatikan penggunaan kapasitas data yang telah mereka gunakan agar tagihan kartu seluler mereka tidak membengkak.
Sumber http://tekno.kompas.com

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

LTE, Jaringan Nirkabel dengan Pertumbuhan Tercepat

Teknologi jaringan Long Term Evolution atau LTE diklaim sebagai jaringan nirkabel dengan pertumbuhan tercepat. Karena LTE mendapat banyak dukungan dari perusahaan penyedia alat dan solusi telekomunikasi, operator seluler, serta pembuat perangkat mobile.

Global mobile Suppliers Association (GSA) mendaulat LTE sebagai jaringan nirkabel dengan adopsi tercepat.

Hal senada juga diungkapkan lembaga riset Strategy Analytics, yang memprediksi ada 90 juta orang yang berlangganan LTE pada akhir tahun ini, dan 1 miliar orang pada 2017.

LTE diusulkan sebagai standar internasional oleh NTT DoCoMo dari Jepang pada 2004. Setelah melewati penelitian dan pengembangan oleh berbagai pihak, LTE pertama kali dikomersialkan untuk publik oleh operator seluler TeliaSonera di Stockholm dan Oslo pada 14 Desember 2009.

Setelah itu, beberapa negara maju memutuskan akan mengadopsi LTE.

Strategic Marketing Manager Ericsson, Warren Chaisatien mengatakan, operator seluler Telstra dari Australia mendeklarasikan diri akan menyelenggarakan LTE pada Maret 2010. Lalu pada September 2010, Telstra mulai mengkomersialkan LTE di Australia.

"Penyelenggaraan LTE di Australia tak hanya menguntungkan bagi industri telekomunikasi, tapi juga seluruh industri yang butuh akses internet super cepat," kata Warren yang berkantor di Australia.

Menurut data GSA yang dirilis September 2012, saat ini ada 96 operator seluler di 46 negara yang telah menawarkan jaringan LTE secara komersil. Di Asia Pasifik, ada 7 negara yang telah menyelenggarakan LTE, yakni Jepang, Korea Selatan, Hong Kong, Singapura, Australia, Filipina, dan India.

Kemudian, 347 operator seluler di 104 negara telah berkomitmen dan mulai melakukan investasi untuk infrastruktur LTE. Investasi ini bisa berupa uji coba atau penelitian dan pengembangan teknologi LTE.

Di Indonesia, 3 operator seluler (Telkomsel, Indosat dan XL Axiata) telah melakukan uji coba LTE.

Kebutuhan menyelenggarakan jaringan LTE juga disebabkan oleh meningkatnya penetrasi penggunaan smartphone dan tablet, yang makin sering dipakai untuk mengunduh aplikasi dan konten. Sehingga, operator seluler merasa perlu menambah kapasitas dan kecepatan akses data.

Di Singapura misalnya, penetrasi penggunaan smartphone mencapai 150% lebih. Sedangkan menurut data Ericsson ConsumerLab yang baru-baru ini dirilis, Singapura menempati posisi pertama dalam hal kepemilikan smartphone (penetrasi 74%) dan posisi kedua pada kepemilikan tablet (31% penetrasi) secara global.

Chaisatien mengatakan, pertumbuhan adopsi LTE lebih cepat 2 sampai 3 tahun dibandingkan 3G.

Dukungan lain terhadap LTE juga datang dari produsen smartphone dan tablet, yang mulai membuat produk dengan dukungan LTE. Hingga kini tercatat ada belasan smartphone yang mendukung LTE, termasuk iPhone 5 besutan Apple.

Namun, hampir semua perangkat yang mendukung LTE itu dibanderol dengan harga mahal, dan belum sepenuhnya mendukung jaringan LTE di seluruh frekuensi.
Sumber http://tekno.kompas.com

8 Fakta Menarik Tentang Google



Google telah lama berjaya sebagai mesin cari internet terpopuler di dunia. Tidak hanya di mesin pencari, Google pun tenar di bidang yang lain, misalnya di pasar smartphone dengan OS Android.

Google didirikan oleh Larry Page dan Sergey Brin pada tahun 1998. Sampai saat ini, keduanya masih aktif menjadi pemimpin Google dengan Larry Page menjadi pejabat CEO.

Berikut beberapa fakta menarik tentang Google yang mungkin tidak banyak diketahui, seperti dikutip detikINET dari Mashable.

 1. Google Doodle pertama
Google sering mendandani desain mesin carinya, yang biasanya berkaitan dengan peristiwa atau perayaan penting tertentu. Julukannya adalah Google Doodle. Namun pada masa awalnya, Google Doodle tidak dibuat untuk merayakan peristiwa tertentu.

Pada tahun 1998, Google Doddle pertama muncul. Kala itu, Brin dan Page pergi berkunjung ke festival bernama Burning Man dan tidak bisa mengurusi Google. Karyawan yang lain pun sedang libur.

Maka didesainlah Google Doddle dengan lambang Burning Man untuk menunjukkan pada pengakses bahwa mereka sedang keluar kantor. Rupanya, mereka harap dimaklumi jika tidak bisa membenarkan masalah teknis, misalnya jika ada crash tertentu di Google.

2. Storage dari Lego

Pada tahun 1996, Google masih dalam tahap percobaan. Mereka membuat storage pertamanya yang hanya berkapasitas 40 GB. Uniknya, bahan pembuatan casingnya dari Lego, mainan yang bisa disusun menjadi bentuk-bentuk tertentu.

Apa alasannya Lego dipilih menjadi konstruksi storage Google pertama ini? Kabarnya karena Lego mudah dimodifikasi dan biayanya murah. Maklum kala itu, Google baru bermodal sangat sedikit.

3. Tweet pertama

Google bergabung juga di Twitter, situs mikroblogging yang sedang tenar saat ini. Pesan pertama mereka diposting pada Februari 2009. Mau tahu apa postingannya?

“I’m 01100110 01100101 01100101 01101100 01101001 01101110 01100111 00100000 01101100 01110101 01100011 01101011 01111001 00001010.” Konon artinya adalah “I’m feeling lucky”, salah satu frase terkenal Google.

4. Menyewa kambing

Google terkenal niat merayakan April Mop, hari di mana banyak orang melakukan keisengan. Mereka bahkan pernah menyewa cukup banyak kambing dari pertenakan bernama California Grazing.

Pada lelucon tahun 2009 itu, Google mengaku menyewa kambing untuk memotong rumput liar yang tumbuh di sekitar kantor pusatnya. Memakai kambing dinilai lebih ramah lingkungan ketimbang mesin pemotong rumput. Akhirnya, diketahui sewa kambing ini hanya keisengan April Mop ala Google.

5. Google jadi kosa kata

Saking populernya, Google akhirnya dianggap sebagai kata dan masuk dalam kamus bahasa Inggris bergengsi. Kamus Merriam Webster dan Oxford English Dictionary memasukkan kata Google sebagai verb atau kata kerja.

Tidak dapat dipungkiri, Google memang begitu identik dengan mesin cari online. Jika ingin mencari sesuatu, cukup banyak orang berkata googling saja!.

6. Menggemari anjing

Google dikenal sebagai perusahaan yang ramah terhadap kehadiran anjing. Karyawan diizinkan membawa anjing ke kantor, dengan catatan si anjing perilakunya tidak mengganggu.

Cukup banyak karyawan dan pejabat Google membawa anjing kesayangannya ke kantor. Seperti Yoshka pada gambar di atas, adalah anjing kepunyaan Urs Holzle, Senior VP Operations Google.

7. Snack pertama

Google juga dikenal sangat memanjakan karyawannya, misalnya dalam soal makanan. Sampai saat ini, tersedia makanan lezat gratis untuk para pekerja Google, karena sejak awal Google tidak ingin pegawainya kesulitan mencari makanan.

Nah, snack pertama Google diketahui adalah Swedish Fish, yang berisi beragam permen kenyal. Snack ini diberikan pada tahun 1999, pada masa awal berdirinya Google.

8. Ada 'dinosaurus' di kantor Google

Kantor pusat Google di Mountain View dikenal dengan suasananya menyenangkan. Fasilitasnya lengkap, dekorasinya pun sangat fun sehingga membuat karyawan betah berlamal lama bekerja.

Di salah satu sudutnya, ada pemandangan unik. Yaitu replika kerangka dinosaurus jenis T Rex. Tampaknya, bekerja di kantor Google jauh dari kata membosankan.

Fino Yurio Kristo - detikinet
Selasa, 18/09/2012 13:06 WIB

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Apple: iPhone 5 orders topped 2M in 24 hours

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Federal judge hands Samsung setback against Apple

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Hands on with the new iPhone 5

(CNN) -- One of the more striking things about holding a new iPhone model is how your old iPhone, which seemed perfectly sleek and adequate just an hour earlier, can suddenly feel slow, clunky and heavy. It's a neat trick, one that Apple is betting on to help it ship new units to existing iPhone owners in the coming year.

After today's Apple press event, we were given some hands-on time with the upgraded iPhone 5, as well as the iPod touch and iPod nano. Here are our first impressions of the taller, lighter iPhone 5, which we tested next to a crusty, pratically fossilied iPhone 4.

Opinion: The iPhone is not our savior

The iPhones and iPods were laid out on tables in the dim, windowless hall at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. Protective Apple employees made sure the devices weren't pilfered, wiped off journalists' finger prints and visibly flinched every time someone dropped a phone (which happened quite a few times while we were there).

From the front, the iPhone 5 looks just like the iPhone 4 and 4S. It actually takes a moment to register that it's taller (holding it next to a previous iPhone model helps bring it home). The display is the same retina display found in the iPhone 4, iPhone 4S and now, the new iPod Touch, but is now 4-inches instead of 3.5-inches.

Watch what makes the new iPhone go Apple unveils the new iPhone 5 CNN App shown at iPhone 5 press event Apple unveils smaller, faster iPhone 5

Then you pick it up. The phone is incredibly light, and that weight is its most striking and memorable feature. It feels almost delicate in the hand, naked without some sort of protective case to prevent it from snapping in half. Of course, the iPhone is not nearly that fragile. The body is made out of the same aluminum found in MacBooks, as well as glass. It feels expensive, not like a plastic device that could break easily. (We look forward to the inevitable drop tests.)

2007: Jobs unveils the first iPhone

On their own, thinner and lighter are interesting selling points. Yes, it feels incredible in the hand, but the iPhone 4 wasn't exactly weighing anyone down, and consumers weren't clamoring for a thinner smartphone. On the other hand, Apple prides itself on delivering features people will want before they know they want them. There has been demand for more screen real estate, and on that front the iPhone 5 delivers, but it might still not be enough for those hoping for a 4.5-inch screen like what's found on many Android devices.

The new iPhone has a faster, A6 processor. It did feel zippy as we flipped through the new Passbook feature, watched movies and scrolled through websites, however these tasks weren't exactly lagging on the iPhone 4. Games were a great place to see the processor in action, where detailed graphics are rendered incredibly fast.

Also noticeably speedy was the new panorama feature in the camera app, which processed a 360-degree image of the room almost instantly. For many similar third-party apps, there's a short wait time while the images are stitched together.

The demo devices were all running the new version of Apple's mobile operating system, iOS 6, which has Apple's first Google-free maps app. The Flyover feature turns cities into interactive, 3D images. You can drag a finger to spin around a skyscraper and zoom in and out of the city from any angle, not just the straight down satellite view. There is a bit of lag on the loading time when you move to a new area, but somehow the features still feels shockingly fast. Flyover is more fun than functional, but perhaps the stunning graphics and turn-by-turn directions will distract consumers from what's newly missing from the Maps app, like the very useful public transit directions feature.

The room was too loud to test out the Siri voice assistant, which has turned to third-party services to improve results. Restaurant results are now powered by Open Table, movie times and reviews by Rotten Tomatoes. It has also added Facebook integration. And the devices were all connected to WiFi, so tests of the new LTE cellular connections will have to wait until we have devices in hand.

Apple refreshes the iPod

We also spent a bit of time with the iPod touch. The iPod touch is like the iPhone's kid brother, always inheriting old clothes and toys. It has Siri and the 5 megapixel camera from the last version of the iPhone, as well as the A5 processor. The last generation iPod touch got the retina display and front-facing camera already available on the iPhone. But this time the iPod touch got two of the iPhone's most stunning new features at the same time: The taller screen and crazy thin and light body (the iPod touch is actually .06-inches thinner and weighs 0.85 ounces less than the iPhone 5).

The choreography of an Apple event

During the hands-on time, Apple executives milled about the room, including smiling CEO Tim Cook, who was shaking hands and giving a lot of hugs. He had good reason to be happy; the phone appears to be top-notch, its new body an impressive feat of engineering. It may not be the most mind-blowing upgrade, but that doesn't diminish its level of quality.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Analyze your Facebook data with new Wolfram Alpha tool

(CNN) -- The scattered bits of information you upload to Facebook might not seem interesting on their own -- a photo of a baby here, a happy birthday greeting there. But taken as a whole, your Facebook profile is a trove of data that can be analyzed to find patterns and stats about your online life (or your friends' lives).

A new tool from Wolfram Alpha churns out an extensive and personalized analytics report all about you based on Facebook data. Go to the Wolfram Alpha site, type in "Facebook report" and click the button that reads Analyze My Facebook Data. You will need to give the Wolfram Connection app permission to access your Facebook profile and history.

Once it's done computing, you'll be presented with a detailed, interactive, graph filled, time-killing report of your Facebook life. Get stats on the types of friends you have, including age ranges, relationship status and religion. See your most popular photos and posts, a chart of when you're most likely to post on Facebook, and a neat graphic showing how all of your friends are connected to each other and to you.

There are over 60 sections of information to dig into, including word clouds, pie charts and maps. You can also get a report on your willing Facebook friends by typing "Facebook Friends" into the Wolfram Alpha search field.

Wolfram Alpha is a computational search engine that is known for, among other things, being part of the brains that power Apple's voice-assistant, Siri.

Dr. Stephen Wolfram, the founder of Wolfram Research, is deeply interested in the personal analytics field. In March, he shared detailed analytics of his own work life, using vast amounts of data he's been collecting about himself, including over two decades of e-mails, a log of every keystroke he's typed for years (100 million plus), meetings, phone calls and, thanks to a pedometer, steps taken. He looked at the data for trends that would give him clues about his own life and behavior, including when he's most creative

Most people don't have that extensive an amount of data on their lives, but they probably have more than they think. While Wolfram has been actively recording this data, most people have been creating trails without realizing it. E-mail archives, FitBits, Tweets, texts and geotagged images and check-ins are all usable stores of information about your life. it's just a matter of time until there are accessible tools to extract, helping make sense out of all of it.

Wolfram says there are plenty more sources he hasn't tapped yet for his own personal number crunching, including medical data, his genome and motion sensors in his home. The Facebook tool is just the start for consumers too -- the company plans to add new tools and features in the future.

The Facebook analytics tool is fun, but also a sobering reminder of just how much information we willingly share with social networks. It could inspire some people to clamp down on the amount of information they share online, and others to record even more and embrace all the interesting possibilities of tracking personal data.

"I've no doubt that one day pretty much everyone will routinely be doing all sorts of personal analytics on a mountain of data that they collect about themselves," says Wolfram in the blog post.

Facebook ad targeting to use e-mails, phone numbers

Thursday, August 30, 2012

At 101, Facebook's oldest user visits campus

(CNN) -- She may be nearly four times as old as its founder, but Florence Detlor likes Facebook.

At 101 years old, she's been named by the social network as the oldest of their 900 million registered users.

And she also happens to live near Facebook's headquarters in Menlo Park, California, a fact that helped her get a personal tour and chance to meet some of the site's leaders.

On her own page, Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg posted a photo Monday of herself, Detlor and CEO Mark Zuckerberg (who is 28, the same age Detlor was in 1939).

Zuckerberg's Facebook future in doubt Mark Zuckerberg: The Musical Meet the first lady of Facebook

"Honored to meet Florence Detlor, who at 101 years old is the oldest registered Facebook user," Sandberg wrote. "Thank you for visiting us Florence!"

Detlor says on her profile page that she's a 1932 graduate of Occidental College. She joined the site almost exactly three years ago (August 19, 2009). As of Tuesday morning, Detlor had 652 Facebook friends.

"I like to think of new friends," she posted Monday, suggesting that some on that list may have appeared thanks to her 15 minutes of social-media fame.

She's a regular, but not overly prolific, poster on the site. But in three years, she's "liked" only two things: the Sony Dash, a pre-iPad tablet of sorts, and Dogwork.com, a site that specializes in animal videos.

Detlor's status as Facebook's oldest active user has already inspired some light-hearted competition.

"Ok -- so now I'm feeling competitive and ready to get my grandma on Facebook. She's 103. ;-)" wrote a commenter on Sandberg's page.

Detlor may be on the extreme end, but she's part of a trend that's been evident for the past few years.

The percentage of Internet users 50 and up who said they use social-networking sites spiked from 22% in 2009 to 42% the next year, according to a survey by the Pew Research Center.

Respondents 65 and older reported a 100% increase, while those between 50 and 64 jumped 88%. By comparison, the number of users from 18-29 who said they use networking sites rose a much more meager 13%.

Cricket to offer Muve exclusively on Android plans

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Should Google be running scared from Apple?

(CNN) -- Apple sue us next? Not a chance.

That's the gist of Google's message following Apple's $1 billion victory over Samsung in a California patent suit. The search giant is doing its best to quell fears that its Android operating system could be the next target for Apple's lawyers. And you can't blame them.

Google has to do something to keep its partners in the smartphone and tablet world from panicking, to say nothing of investors. But experts say that while the Apple v. Samsung suit didn't describe a legal route that leads directly to Mountain View, Google had better watch its back.

Apple v. Samsung ripped apart both the hardware and software used in Samsung's very popular smartphones and tablets. Arguments hinged on whether certain hardware features -- like a bezeled display and a lozenge-shaped earpiece -- had been ripped off from Apple by Samsung's designers. A jury decided that in multiple instances they had.

What the Apple-Samsung verdict means How South Koreans view Samsung ruling Apple vs. Samsung: Tale of two countries

Apple also filed claims that Samsung developed operating system features that violated Apple patents. Samsung licenses Google's Android operating system for its tablets and phones, and makes changes to personalize the user experience. Those small changes include pinch-to-zoom, tap-to-zoom, and bounce-back features, which fall under Apple-owned utility patents.

Google, which has stayed silent about the case until now, said Monday that these utility patent features aren't part of the core Android operating system, which runs underneath Samsung's and other device manufacturer's modifications. Google gives its licensees a plain, stock version of the Android operating system, which by itself does not violate Apple's patents. However, licensees can modify the Android system and build any feature they like, and those features could violate other patented technologies.

Here's Google's full statement in reaction to the verdict:

"The court of appeals will review both infringement and the validity of the patent claims. Most of these don't relate to the core Android operating system, and several are being re-examined by the US Patent Office. The mobile industry is moving fast and all players -- including newcomers -- are building upon ideas that have been around for decades. We work with our partners to give consumers innovative and affordable products, and we don't want anything to limit that."

Phillip Philbin, an intellectual property attorney with national law firm Haynes and Boone, says Google's statement is a message to its partners that the verdict only applies to Samsung's products, and not the entire Android ecosystem. "It's essentially Google saying that the patent issues apply to Samsung's software changes and Samsung's hardware, but not to 'core' Android or other Android products," says Philbin.

Looking at the case, Purdue law professor Mark McKenna says Google is focusing on distancing itself from the pinch-to-zoom, the tap-to-zoom, and the bounce-back features that Samsung created, saying they aren't included in its base Android code. "Google's claim is that those features are part of the modified experience from other companies that license the Android operating system," says McKenna.

Analysts agree with Google's stance, saying there is no evidence out there that the core Android operating system has infringed on Apple or any other company's patents. But Google has yet to endure the scrutiny of a full-blown patent suit. The California jury was looking at what Samsung did or didn't do, not what Google did or didn't do. That's a key distinction. But if Google has its way, no jury will ever test its claims.

Google has gone to great lengths to keep its operating system distinct from iOS with widgets, rotary and pull-tab lock screens, and an applications menu separate from the home screen. All very un-Apple-like design flourishes. Even Google's Nexus hardware line, made with Samsung, HTC, and Asus, includes designs with rounded corners, curved screens, and textured battery covers that could never be mistaken for an Apple device.

Still Google is not immune to a patent lawsuit, even though it wouldn't be easy for Apple -- or anyone else -- to bring a case. One of the chief reasons Apple hasn't yet gone after Google, McKenna says, is because Google doesn't make any money from selling the Android operating system (it makes money from mobile ads). Since Google is giving away Android, it makes it hard for Apple to prove that the operating system harms its market share.

"That doesn't mean Apple couldn't sue Google, it just makes it more challenging to prove the direct impact," says McKenna. "That's why Apple's gone the indirect route, by suing device manufacturers that can modify Android."

And it's not inconceivable that Apple eventually decides to go directly after Google, McKenna says. If it gets on a winning streak in U.S. courts against the rest of the handset makers, it might take a shot. "This is Act 1 in a multi-act play," says McKenna. "Apple is on the record saying they want to destroy the Android ecosystem, and to do that it's either going have to go after the all the software makers, or every single hardware manufacturer that sells these things."

Whether its Apple going after its next victim, or the Samsung case going to appeal, Philbin agrees there is a long way to go. "Patent litigation takes place on at least three fronts â€" the district court, the patent office and the federal circuit," he says. "What we've had so far is just the district court's ruling and we haven't even heard from the District Judge on this yet. So this process is far from over."

The legal process perhaps, but as is the case in the fast-moving tech world, the design process has already moved on. Pick up the latest Samsung smartphone and you won't see the hardware or software features that the jury found violated Apple's patents. Samsung has learned its lesson, albeit in a very expensive way. Google already has a tight grip on Android, and you're likely to see that grip tighten as it looks to avoid any of its own patent litigation woes.

The good news for consumers is that rather than waiting for jury verdicts in the future, there's a good chance we'll be waiting for the next crop of smartphones and tablets with forms and features that are distinct -- not just a bunch of Apple copycats.

With additional reporting by Nathan Olivarez-Giles.

Monday, August 20, 2012

What's next for the Rich Kids of Instagram?

(CNN) -- They have money, youth, ample amounts of free time and now a bit of fame. So what's next for the much maligned people featured on the hit site Rich Kids of Instagram? Some are grounded from over-sharing on the Internet, others embarrassed by the attention and some might be heading for TV.

The Tumblr blog sprung to life on July 13 and was an instant hit. It is a collection of photos found on Instagram that capture young wealthy people enjoying a life of minimally employed opulence: They're on lavish vacations, taking the most expensive modes of transportation, showing off designer belongings and doing all manner of things with and to champagne. Mixed in with the fun (seriously, who wouldn't want to water-slide off a yacht?) are less creative attempts to brag, like sepia-shaded photos of exorbitant restaurant receipts.

"A few glasses of wine and some misspelled Instagram searches led to its creation," the anonymous brains behind Rich Kids of Instagram, or RKOI, told CNN. Many of the images featured on the Tumblr were tagged with keywords on Instagram that made them easy to find, like #wealth, #mansion and #yacht. There's a Hilton, a Trump and a Brant in the mix, but many of the smartphone-photography enthusiasts are relatively unknown, for now.

Tony Hawk fights crime with Instagram

While the reaction to the Tumblr has been largely one of disgust and anger -- "Pretty sad how those Rich Kids of Instagram will never know the value of a hard days OH MY GOD I HATE THEM SO MUCH," tweeted Josh Hara -- some of the kids are enjoying the attention. The blog's creators said they've had requests from people who want to be featured on the site. Many Instagramers are unselfconsciously tagging their photos with the #rkoi hashtag, hoping to get featured on the blog.

"I believe that the people who are outraged may be a little jealous," said Tom Ierna, a 19-year-old self-described "entrepreneur, New Yorker, blogger, mogul." Ierna's photos have been featured on RKOI multiple times -- one shows him in front of a large yacht in the Hamptons and another is an image of a Versace gold-plated AK47. (He does not own the gun; he just snapped a photo of it in an East Hampton boutique.)

The public's fascination with these kids has not gone unnoticed by Hollywood, where wealthy personalities are a huge draw on shows like "Keeping up with the Kardashians" and the "Real Housewives" series. Naturally, a reality TV casting agent has been reaching out to many of the blog's subjects.

"They seem to have huge personalities and would be amazing on TV," said Lexi Shoemaker, a casting agent who has worked on hits like "The Biggest Loser" and Bravo's "Tabatha's Salon Takeover." She would not share any details about her current project, but said the kids she had contacted had been receptive so far.

"I would consider doing a reality show, it would be a very smart business decision," said Ierna, who said he has been offered a spot on a reality TV show in the past but turned it down. He did not say if he was contacted by Shoemaker.

'Real World' star found dead

Not everyone is interested in the fame. The Tumblr's creators have received a few requests to remove images and other photos have been deleted from Instagram by their owners. Luckily, most of the originals live on in all their gilded glory on the RKOI site.

"My friends and I don't want to be associated with this. This is very embarrassing," Annabel Schwartz told "Good Morning America." The 19-year-old posted an image of herself and four friends in front of a helicopter while on vacation in Saint-Tropez. She has not deleted the public photo from her Instagram.

Alexa Dell, daughter of Dell CEO Michael Dell, had her social media presence quickly scrubbed from the Internet after a photo of her brother on a private plane to Fiji, feasting on a spread of fruit 3-feet deep, made it to the RKOI blog. Bloomberg Businessweek dug into a Dell regulatory filing and reported that the Dell family pays approximately $2.7 million a year for personal security. Between her active Instagram and Twitter accounts, Alexa Dell was leaving a trail of information, including locations and timing of trips, that could have been used by kidnappers or burglars.

Andres Morales,15, thinks being on the blog is a chance to promote his real passion, being a pilot. "Aviation is my life," Morales told CNN. In his RKOI Instagram photo, he is standing in front of a Quest Kodiak airplane, which typically costs about $1.7 million. It's not his, but he is checking it out "for future interest." Though only in the 10th grade, Morales has spent much of his life perusing aviation and flying, starting when he was eight. He is proud of his hobby -- he has 300 hours of flight experience and wants to be a commercial airline pilot when he's older. He's also proud of his lifestyle.

"Yes, my lifestyle is a jet-setter lifestyle," he said. "I travel a lot and love to fly private and in first class." Morales thinks the interest in the Rich Kids of Instagram blog is because "people cant find anything else to do with their lives so they stalk other people's photos and make a big deal out of it."

Ierna speculates the blog has become popular because people are "intrigued to see how the 1% lives." He said he was amused with all the attention at first, but that it has become a headache.

Ierna has family money -- both his father and grandfather were successful businessmen -- but he also has his own brand and career plans. He'd like to attend NYU and study business, eventually opening high-end nightclubs, restaurants and clothing boutiques around the globe.

"I think it accurately represents my lifestyle to some extent," said Ierna of his photos. "For the most part I live a very normal life."

Art photography in the age of Instagram

Facebook falls to half of public offering price

NEW YORK (AP) â€" Facebook's stock fell to $19 for the first time on Friday, losing half its market value since the company's initial public offering in May.

The stock dipped 87 cents, or 4 percent, to briefly hit $19, just minutes before it closed the trading day at $19.05. Facebook's shares ended the week down nearly 13 percent.

Facebook hit the $19 milestone a day after the expiration of a lock-up period that had previously prevented some early investors and insiders from selling their shares. Stakeholders who owned a combined 271 million Facebook shares before Thursday can now sell their holdings.

A breakdown of just how many major Facebook Inc. shareholders sold their stock this week won't be available until next week at the earliest, when sellers must disclose such transactions.

Facebook's stock has struggled since the company's mid-May IPO. It closed its first day of trading barely above its initial offering price of $38. It has been below that level since.

The stock has been down on 38 trading days, up on 25 days and unchanged on one since its initial public offering.

Investors have been concerned about the social network's ability to increase revenue and make money from its growing mobile audience. Many analysts, however, hold positive opinions of the company's long-term prospects.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Apple stock hits new high after 4-month dip

NEW YORK (AP) â€" Apple's stock hit a new high Friday after a four-month swoon, as investors look ahead to the release of a new iPhone and possibly a smaller iPad.

Already the world's most valuable company, Apple Inc. saw its stock hit $645.48 in midday trading, before retreating to $645.02. That was up $8.68, or 1.4 percent, from Thursday's close.

The previous high for the stock was $644, hit on April 10.

Apple has a market value of about $605 billion, almost 50 percent higher than No. 2 Exxon Mobil Corp. at $408 billion.

Apple's stock fell last month after the company's earnings report for the April-June quarter showed the slowest growth in more than two years. It was only the second time in 10 years that Apple had missed analyst expectations.

Jefferies & Co. analyst Peter Misek raised his price target on the stock to $900 from $800 on Friday, saying an "iPad Mini" is in production in China. His belief is based on readings of reports from Apple's suppliers, contract manufacturers and contacts in the region. He now believes Apple will build 25 million iPads of all kinds in the current quarter, up from a previous estimate of 16 million, which did not include the "Mini."

The Cupertino, Calif., company hasn't said anything about a new iPhone or iPad.

Speculation about a smaller iPad has been rife this year. Analysts believe Apple wants to make a cheaper tablet computer to counter the threat of the Google Nexus and Amazon Kindle Fire, both of which sell for $199. The cheapest current iPad costs $399.

Analysts now believe the iPhone 5 will go on sale in late September, and it's widely believed that it will be the biggest phone launch ever. Rumored upgrades include the ability access the latest wireless data networks in the U.S. and a slightly bigger screen.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Facebook insiders can sell stock as 'lock-up' ends

MENLO PARK, Calif. (AP) â€" Facebook's early investors and a handful of directors will become eligible on Thursday to sell stock they own in the social networking company. It marks the beginning of a time-honored process for public companies, one that will give many Facebook employees the same right to sell their shares this fall.

It's conceivable none of them will sell. But if they do, up to 1.91 billion more shares could flood the stock market over the next several months â€" more than four times the 421 million shares that have been trading since Facebook's initial public offering in May.

So-called "lock-up" periods, which prevent insiders from unloading shares too close to an IPO, generally start to expire 90 days after a stock makes its public debut.

Lock-ups are designed to prevent a stock from experiencing the kind of volatility that might occur if too many shareholders decide to sell a newly traded stock all at once. The progressive phasing-in of various shareholders allows early owners to shed their stock and make way for new investors, says Peter Zaleski, a professor of economics at the Villanova School of Business in Pennsylvania.

But there's risk involved, too. If too many people sell, Facebook Inc.'s stock price could decline.

That's a problem the company can't afford. On Tuesday, the stock closed at $20.38, down 46 percent from its initial public offering price of $38.

In all, 271 million shares will become eligible this week, according to Facebook's regulatory filings. Firms ranging from Accel Partners to Goldman Sachs, Zynga CEO Mark Pincus and Facebook board members James Breyer, Peter Thiel and Reid Hoffman are among those free to sell stock they own. Microsoft Corp., another early Facebook investor, will be eligible to sell, too.

Facebook's 28-year-old chief executive, Mark Zuckerberg, won't be able to sell his shares until mid-November. Facebook hasn't explained why Zuckerberg didn't become eligible this week. He controls about a third of the 1.22 billion shares and stock options that will become unlocked on Nov. 14.

Wedbush analyst Michael Pachter believes it's unlikely that top executives will sell their shares as soon as they can. It would look bad for the company, Pachter says, if Facebook's No. 2 executive and operating chief Sheryl Sandberg or finance chief David Ebersman decide to sell.

Zynga Inc., the company behind "FarmVille" and other games played largely on Facebook, was sued last month for waiving lock-up restrictions for insiders, including Pincus, before the company's first-quarter results in April.

"The only people who would sell are people who need the money," Pachter says. "I would be very worried if Sheryl Sandberg or Ebersman sell, but they are not that dumb."

Following this week's expiration date, about 243 million more Facebook shares and stock options will enter the public stock market between Oct. 15 and Nov. 13. Then there's the Nov. 14 expiration, and another a month later. Next May, a year after Facebook's IPO, the Russian Internet company Mail.ru Group and DST Global â€" both of which made early investments in Facebook â€" will be able to sell their shares.

The early investors who sold their stock to the public as part of Facebook's IPO did so at $38 each. If they sell now, they will make far less money from each share than they did in the IPO. Facebook's stock has not hit its IPO price since its first day of trading. As a result, the company's market value has plummeted from $104 billion to $59.1 billion in roughly three months.

Goldman Sachs and a few other investors are in an unusual position to profit if they sell Facebook's stock at its current price. A January 2011 investment round from Goldman Sachs and others valued Facebook at $50 billion.

Even before Facebook's IPO, Silicon Valley merchants â€" those who sell real estate, cars and other luxury items â€" had been expecting a boost to the local economy from rank-and-file Facebook employees who received stock options as part of their compensation. Now, experts are cautioning those merchants to temper their expectations.

"In light of the company's market value being half of what was expected, and the fact that the big gainers are not in Silicon Valley year-round, I would not expect a new boom in Silicon Valley resulting from this," Zaleski says.

Jon Burgstone, professor at the Center for Entrepreneurship and Technology at the University of California, Berkeley, points out that many of Facebook's shareholders had already been able to sell their stock through private stock markets before the company's IPO. In many ways, he added, "Facebook's IPO was really a secondary public offering. A number of large shareholders and early employees have already been cashing out."

As for flashy cars and fancy clothes?

"People here generally don't spend their money on expensive clothing, jewelry, etc.," Burgstone says. "The ethos of Silicon Valley remains â€" what have you done, and what can you do now? â€" not what label are you wearing."

Sunday, August 12, 2012

What we've done on Mars, and what's next

(CNN) -- The much-celebrated Mars rover Curiosity is headed for Mount Sharp, where it will help scientists explore the question of life on Mars as it climbs up and up.

Meanwhile, however, NASA's budget for planetary exploration is slated to go down, down, down.

Scientists are basking in the success of Curiosity's stunning landing earlier this week, proving that a complicated system involving a parachute and a sky crane can safely deliver a 2,000-pound vehicle to Mars. The $2.6 billion Curiosity will spend years roaming the planet, snapping photos and gathering scientific data.

Given the budget constraints facing the space agency, however, there are limits on what the rover, and NASA, will be able to do on the surface of the Red Planet. Although astronauts brought back thousands of moon rocks during the Apollo Mission, there's never been a sample of Martian material returned to Earth. Such a mission is considered a priority, so scientists can do more detailed chemical analyses.

But it may not happen anytime soon.

"We're optimistic, given the success of our program, but we're anxious, too," said Richard Zurek, chief scientist for the Mars Program Office at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. "Like all of us, we're anxious about our country's ability to be able to support and do these kinds of things."

NASA's budget for Mars exploration is slated to take a huge hit in 2013, dropping from $587 million to $361 million. It will then further decline to $228 million in 2014 and $189 million in 2015, rising slightly in 2016 before sloping upward to $503 million in 2017.

Images of Mars' earth-like landscape

Researchers landed Curiosity on Gale Crater, which is 96 miles across and may have once hosted a lake. Mount Sharp, in the middle of the crater, is composed of hundreds of rock layers accumulated over time. The rover will climb a small portion of the 3-mile-high mountain, testing different layers to search for organic molecules that could indicate the presence of life on the barren planet.

Mars 'crime scene' photos

"We've demonstrated that we've got a landing system that worked. And it worked well," Zurek said, referring to Curiosity's dramatic touchdown. "The question now is: What will we use this for? Or will we have to step back from that because those kinds of missions -- of putting something that takes a metric ton down to the surface -- they're just too expensive for our future?"

The early days

Is the Mars rover vain?

Curiosity is the latest in a long trajectory of missions that have allowed humanity to study Mars more extensively than any other planet apart from our own. A series of visits from Earth-made spacecrafts has taught us that Mars used to be a warmer, wetter place, perhaps with liquid water and even life.

Meet the man behind the photos of Mars

Decades of research have led scientists to understand Martian history and pinpoint places on the planet where liquid water may have once flowed -- targets for future investigation, if money allows.

But getting to Mars didn't happen on the first try.

The USSR initiated a number of failed attempts to go to Mars in the early 1960s, including Sputnik 24, a lander that never left Earth's orbit. The United States also started out with bad luck: a failed flyby attempt by Mariner 3 in 1964.

Earthlings' first successful landing on Mars happened in May 1971 with the Soviet Union's Mars 3 lander. It failed after sending 20 seconds of video data to the orbiter, however.

NASA claimed a big success the same year: Mariner 9 marked the first time a U.S. spacecraft had orbited a planet other than our own. This orbiter discovered river and channel-like features on Mars, and took the first high-resolution images of Mars' moons Phobos and Deimos.

Hopes were high for NASA's Viking mission, launched in 1975, which included two landers equipped to search for tiny organisms. The orbiters mapped the surface of the planet, while the landers monitored the weather and sent back color panoramic views of Mars.

"It was extraordinary engineering achievement. A huge amount of science came out," said Scott Hubbard, former head of NASA's Mars program and author of the book "Exploring Mars: Chronicles from a Decade of Discovery."

But the expectation of evidence of life -- namely, that the lander's arm would be able to put material into its chemistry kit and see organic molecules -- fell through. These molecules wouldn't prove that life existed, but they would be a signal that life was once possible there. There just wasn't conclusive evidence that Mars had these molecules.

Then came almost two decades of inactivity. NASA didn't send any other spacecraft to Mars until 1993 with the failed Mars Observer, followed by the successful orbiter Mars Global Surveyor in 1996.

Why the break? The space-shuttle program was one reason, said Zurek. NASA's priority at the time was manned vehicles, and budgets were tight. The Challenger disaster of 1986 also set NASA back.

Zurek believes we may be in a phase like that today, with not enough money to go around for all the programs NASA wants to develop. Also, the priority is once again in a new project: The Space Launch System, which will be the largest and most powerful rocket ever built.

Exploring Mars' surface

A game-changer was the discovery of a meteorite that appears to have come from Mars, found in Allan Hills, Antarctica, in 1984. Some scientists said they thought they saw evidence of tiny fossils that looked like dried-out life from Mars embedded in the meteorite.

No one knew where the meteorite came from, but it ignited a huge amount of interest in returning to Mars, Hubbard said. It also stressed the need to return samples from Mars to Earth, so they could be fully analyzed by multiple scientists.

"Without the Mars rock, we might not have Curiosity today," said Hubbard, whose job as the "first Mars czar" was to plan the next decade of exploration.

The first wheeled vehicle to land on Mars was during NASA's 1997 Mars Pathfinder mission, which consisted of a stationary lander and a surface rover called Sojourner. The rover was a mere 23 pounds and about the size of a large microwave oven. The mission demonstrated airbag technology in landing the rover without damage.

Japan got in on the Mars action in 1998 with the Nozomi orbiter, but the spacecraft failed to communicate.

At NASA, Hubbard's goals included understanding Mars as a system, looking for potentially habitable environments, examining whether the planet was habitable in the past and preparing to return samples from Mars to Earth.

"The sequence of landers was strategically planned to have ever-increasing capability to go forward and do more," he said.

NASA's 2001 Mars Odyssey mission helped relay communications to Earth from the missions that would follow.

Europe entered the Mars race in 2003 with the Mars Express Orbiter and the Beagle 2 lander. Mars Express is still operating, but the lander never communicated from the surface.

Before Curiosity, NASA's big rover project was the Mars Exploration Rover Mission: two golf-cart-sized rovers called Spirit and Opportunity. They arrived on Mars in January 2004. Each rover was only supposed to operate for 90 days, but both far exceeded that time frame.

Spirit lasted for several years before it lost one of its wheels. As it hobbled along, it broke through the crust of the surface and got stuck in an area called Troy.

During its escape, another of Spirit's wheels failed. But while stuck, Spirit had a breakthrough: it found soil rich in sulfates, which are a component of steam. This suggests there may have once been conditions on Mars able to support life.

Signs of water?

As long as Curiosity has healthy mobility, it shouldn't find itself stuck in this kind of situation, said John Callas, project manager of the mission. The newest rover also uses brushless motors, which don't have the wear mechanism of the motors in Spirit and Opportunity.

Spirit stopped communicating in 2010. Opportunity, meanwhile, still chugs along and sent back its 100,000th picture in July. The rover also found a vein of the mineral gypsum, which indicates water may have once flowed on Mars.

His other car is on Mars

The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, launched in 2005, conducted analyses that helped scientists determine where Curiosity should land. The orbiter also found in 2008 a new kind of mineral, called opaline silica, which suggested that liquid water had been on Mars as recently as 2 billion years ago. The theory is that volcanic activity or meteorite impact on Mars created materials that liquid water would have altered, and the result is opaline silica.

MRO camera imagery also suggested that briny water may flow near Mars' equator in its southern hemisphere. These surface features appear to fade in the winter and reutrn in the spring. The possible liquid flows are extremely small and narrow.

Further clues to water on Mars came from the Phoenix Mars Lander, which arrived on Mars in May 2008. The lander studied the thin Martian atmosphere, consisting of 95% carbon dioxide. Isotopes of carbon and oxygen can tell a lot about whether water existed on the planet.

Data from Phoenix suggested that the Martian surface has interacted with liquid water, and even in modern times. The data also indicated that the planet had volcanic activity as recently as several million years ago. The chemical signature seen in the carbon dioxide points toward liquid water that was primarily at temperatures near freezing.

Also, the lander's robotic arm camera discovered possible evidence of ice at its landing site.

What do you think about the Mars mission?

MAVEN and beyond

The next Mars mission is the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution Mission, or MAVEN, which is scheduled to launch late next year. The instruments for it are already built, Zurek said.

Evidence gained through previous missions suggests that early in its history -- perhaps as much as 4 billion years ago -- Mars was a wetter place. Where did that water go?

It could be that water is frozen into the planet's surface, as observations from Phoenix suggested. But the water could have also been lost to space. Mars doesn't have a global magnetic field like the Earth does, so charged particles emitted from the sun -- the solar wind -- affect Mars in a much bigger way. The current theory is that the solar wind "stole" most of Mars' atmosphere, so radiation from the sun quickly boils any remaining liquid water.

MAVEN will measure the interaction of solar wind with current atmosphere, Zurek said. Using models of the sun's history, scientists may be able to estimate how much water the planet could have lost.

"MAVEN is the next mission. We don't want it to be the last mission in Mars exploration for a similar period, like in the '80s where there were no Mars missions, and everything was sort of on hold," Zurek said.

Meanwhile, Europe plans to launch the ExoMars Orbiter and a ground-based probe in 2016. The probe, called the Entry, Descent and Landing Demonstrator Module, isn't expected to last long, and is meant to be a demonstration of landing technologies. It will perform limited scientific experiments during its brief life.

European space officials and NASA were going to work together on a trace gas orbiter, but NASA pulled out because of budgetary reasons. Instead, the European Space Agency is working with Russia's Roscosmos. The plan is to launch the ExoMars rover in 2018, carrying European and Russian instruments.

Future questions

Exploration of the moon has been more extensive than Mars in many respects. In addition to fly-bys and orbiters, six Apollo missions sent humans to the moon and brought them back between 1963 and 1972.

The moon is closer to Earth than Mars, but also has a less diverse terrain. The interior of the moon is still mysterious, which is why NASA sent twin lunar orbiters called Gravity Recovery And Interior Laboratory, or GRAIL, to investigate. But consider that while sending an SUV-sized rover to Mars is a celebrated achievement, astronauts drove a "moon buggy" 40 years ago.

We haven't figured out how to send people to Mars yet. The planet is cold and dry, with dust storms that can circle the entire planet and an atmosphere that would be toxic to humans.

"Mars is the most Earth-like planet we have found, for certain," says James Wray, assistant professor at Georgia Institute of Technology and member of the Curiosity science team. "That's not saying as much as you would like it to be saying."

NASA still has a lot of questions about Mars. Has the planet hosted life? Does it host life now, in a place we have yet to discover? Has the climate on Mars changed in a way we can understand? And could Mars be a near-term destination for astronauts?

To send a mission to Mars that would bring back samples, there are a few fundamental engineering questions that need to be answered, says Hubbard: Can scientists pinpoint where they want to go and have a spacecraft land there? Can we collect a soil sample? Can we re-enter the Earth's atmosphere?

Science has proven the answers to the first three questions are "yes." But a fourth question -- can we safely load the Mars sample onto a spacecraft that's returning to Earth? -- is trickier. A rocket would have to be carried to Mars, sit there for a year, blast off and then rendezvous with another spacecraft.

Such an endeavor would require millions of dollars of research and development work. But NASA's projected budget for Mars exploration has "now gotten to the point that it's so low that you could not contemplate doing what I just described," Hubbard said.

The next step after MAVEN remains unclear. There are three other sites that had been considered for Curiosity that could be worth exploring with a surface-based spacecraft. Budget permitting, Hubbard also would eventually like to land another rover on Mars, because a stationary device with a six-foot arm isn't nearly as good as exploring the varied terrains of the planet.

"Mars is far more diverse than anybody thought," he said. "Roving is the way to go. Even though it's more difficult, that's what you need."

NASA officials are hopeful the current dire budgetary situation won't last too long.

Congress has signaled that money will be put back into planetary sciences, said Hubbard, who believes scientists will continue to be vocal about the value of Mars exploration.

"I think this [space science] community is going to make some noise," he said.

Complete coverage of Mars