Brendan Eich Steps Down as CEO of Mozilla Amidst LGBT Equality Controversy

4:48 PM, Apr. 3rd, 2014 · · News

Brendan Eich

Brendan Eich—tech wiz, programmer, creator of JavaScript, longtime member of the Mozilla community, and anti-gay marriage advocate. He built his reputation in technology to become CEO of Mozilla Corporation, but it was a US$1,000 donation in support of Prop 8 in California in 2008 led to his departure from that position on Thursday.

Apple Joins IBM, Microsoft in Patent Reform Lobby Group

1:20 PM, Apr. 3rd, 2014 · · News

Apple is taking a bigger role in pushing for patent reform in the United States by teaming up with IBM, Microsoft, and other companies as part of the Partnership for American Innovation. The organization's goal is to lobby the Federal government to adopt the changes it wants to improve the country's patent system.

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The current state of the patent system in the U.S. has made for an environment where it's far to easy for patent trolls to bully companies into licensing payments that may not be appropriate, but are less expensive than drawn out litigation. It's clear there needs to be some chance, so hopefully the Partnership for American Innovation will work for good and not evil.

Analyst: Amazon’s Fire TV no Threat to Apple TV

10:33 AM, Apr. 3rd, 2014 · · News

Amazon unveiled its Fire TV set top streaming media box on Wednesday, and while it offers some features Apple TV doesn't, it isn't a big threat to Apple, according to Forrester analyst Jim Nail. Fire TV offers streaming video content from the usual sources, such as Netflix and Hulu Plus, and it supports gaming, too.

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Amazon's Fire TV does have some features that set it apart from Apple TV, but it doesn't sound like that's enough to wow analysts. Still, it would be great to see Apple beef up Apple TV's capabilities. Competition is good for consumers, after all.

Apple Gets Green Thumbs Up From Greenpeace For Renewable Energy Usage

10:34 PM, Apr. 2nd, 2014 · · News

Greenpeace Gives Apple a Thumbs Up

Greenpeace has a number of nice things to say about Apple and Apple's commitment to renewable energy. Greenpeace released a report ranking cloud service providers and other internet services and their power usage, and for once thought Apple wasn't completely blowing it.

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You were doing so well to start with, Greenpeace. Really.

Apple Reportedly in Talks To Purchase Renesas Mobile

7:40 PM, Apr. 2nd, 2014 · · News

Apple has opened discussions to purchase the majority of Renesas SP, a Japanese chip maker in dire financial straits. According to Reuters, Apple wants the 55 percent stake that Renesas SP owns in another company called Renesas SP Driver, the largest supplier of chips that control mobile screens to all three iPhone suppliers: Sharp, LG Display, and Japan Display Inc.

Nest Smart Thermostat Warms Up to the UK

4:08 PM, Apr. 2nd, 2014 · · News

Nest Protect and the Nest Learning Thermostat are now available in the UK, making both available outside the US for the first time. Since there aren't a lot of thermostats in the UK, it's an interesting idea to start offering them.

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Well, Google still hasn't killed That Cool Thing They Bought, and in fact, did the opposite by engineering a new version so they could offer it in another market. This is a confusing, but positive, move by Google.

Hider 2 Hits the Mac App Store

11:56 AM, Apr. 2nd, 2014 · · News

MacPaw showed off Hider 2 for the Mac at Macworld/iWorld 2014 last week, and impressed The Mac Observer enough to win an Editors' Choice Award. Now it's available for download at Apple's Mac App Store.

Amazon Takes on Apple TV, Roku with Fire TV

11:23 AM, Apr. 2nd, 2014 · · News

Amazon made a new push to take over your livingroom on Wednesday when it announced the Amazon Fire TV. Like Apple TV, Roku, Xbox Live, and Google Chromecast, Fire TV offers streaming content such as TV shows, movies, and music.

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Amazon clearly wants to be the one stop shop for your books, movies, music, and videos. Between Amazon Prime, Kindle Fire, and now Fire TV, they're working hard to make that happen.

Fantastical 2 for iPad: It’s Finally Here

8:55 AM, Apr. 2nd, 2014 · · News

Fantastical is one of our favorite calendar apps for the Mac and iPhone because of its great interface and natural language entry system, and now -- finally -- it's available for the iPad, too. Flexibits introduced Fantastical 2 for the iPad on Wednesday with a special third-off price for a limited time.