Archive for the ‘Business’ Category
Programmers and other technical employees whose wages were allegedly kept artificially low by widespread no-hire pacts between Apple, Google, Adobe, and Intel are being granted class action status. California district court judge Lucy Koh ruled that the antitrust concerns of the \”overarching conspiracy\” between 2005 and 2009 warranted trying the case en masse. According to a lawyer representing the plaintiffs, over 64,000 employees who worked at the four companies are potential class members. Intuit, Pixar, and Lucasfilm had been named as defendants in the original complaint, but have reached tentative settlements with the plaintiffs totaling $19 million, Bloomberg reports.
After twisting the knife at E3 regarding Microsoft\’s then-complicated game-sharing program, Sony has explained how digital strategy will work on PlayStation 4. Although sharing physical games remains as simple as Sony\’s tongue-in-cheek video suggested, games bought over PSN will be more locked down. The first PS4 you register will be your \”primary console,\” and that\’s where digital purchases will automatically sync to. Anyone logged in on your primary system will then be able to play that game.
After dumping the penny last year, Canada is taking another step towards the fiscal future with the launch of the world\’s first publicly-accessible Bitcoin ATM next Tuesday. As Wired reports, the landmark machine will be installed outside of a coffee house in downtown Vancouver, allowing members of the public to exchange their Canadian Dollars for Bitcoins, or vice versa.
Machines that exchange physical currency for Bitcoins have made quite a few appearances at industry shows and conferences, and there\’s more than one company attempting to put Bitcoin ATMs in public places. The machine to be installed in Vancouver this week comes from Nevada-based Robocoin. To comply with Canadian law, the machine will check your identity using palm prints, photographs, and ID verification, and will only allow for a maximum of CAD$3,000 (around $2,700) worth of transactions per user per day.
Umbrellas — like rain itself, like a two-lane highway, like a four-piece pizza at a table for five — tend to bring out the worst in us all. These made-for-one tools enforce, in spite of themselves, a terrible strain of meteorological Darwinism: they encourage us to prioritize ourselves over others in our effort to stay dry. Which leads to, among other things, The Awkward Umbrella Bump. And The Inadvertent-But-Still-Insulting Eye Poke. And The Escalator Cascade, when the umbrella of one person is perfectly angled to funnel rainwater onto the unfortunate rider below.
This stormy state of affairs, one entrepreneur believes, cannot stand.
An Essex firm is offering a ‘professional mourner’ service for UK funerals.
According to the Daily Mail, Rent a Mourner will provide fake mourners, known as moirologists, in order to increase numbers at services.
The individuals in question are trained actors who specialise in public mourning and are briefed about the deceased before attending the funeral.
The service costs £45 for a two-hour service, and mourners will weep and talk to friends and family members.
Ian Robertson, founder of Rent a Mourner, explained: “We were actually inspired by the market growth in China. The Middle Eastern way is to provide wailers – crying women – as opposed to the quiet, dignified methods we use.”
He added: “It’s growing in the UK – our bookings are up 50% year on year.”
What if you could digitally interact with everything?
The future of augmented reality — think cerebral implants and digital contact lenses — was imagined last year in a short film by graduate students Eran May-raz and Daniel Lazo.
We highly recommend watching the eight-minute film, “Sight” — and also checking out our annotated walk-through.
Sight is an awesome product, but it’s also disturbing in its creation of a world with no off switch, where privacy can be hacked like never before.
With technology like Google Glass set to debut this year and other wearable gadgets on the way, Sight isn’t so implausible.
Companies with female board members are more likely to make decisions that benefit everyone from investors to staff and not just themselves and other directors, the study added.
Business school researchers said the findings show that having women in the boardroom is not just good for equality but good for business too.
The study for the International Journal of Business Governance and Ethics surveyed 600 board directors about their approach to decision making and other corporate issues.
It found that when there were conflicting interests, women board members tended to make fairer decisions than men.
Female directors were more likely to consider how the decision would affect others, whether it is employees, investors or stakeholders for instance.
Consumer Alert: Lab tests show gooey mold in ‘Vitamin Water’ – San Diego, California News Station – KFMB Channel 8 – cbs8.com
A News 8 consumer alert on contaminated Vitamin Water is expanding across the country. More people are coming forward to complain about a gooey substance inside their energy drink.
“There was this blob of stuff in my mouth and it was all over my mouth and my tongue and I had to peel it off,” said Los Angeles resident Saundra Santamarina. “I panicked and I looked at the bottle and there was this blob floating around in it.”
“It’s like something I’ve never seen before and the taste of it was just terrible. And it made me sick,” Joel Kaufman of Pittsburgh reported to News 8 this week.
“I didn’t know if it was some sort of mold that could be harmful or if it was anything animal related. I had no idea,” said Brett, a Navy man from San Diego, who did not want his last named used for this report.
Fingerprints Instead Of Credit Cards? YC-Backed PayTango Aims To Make Payments Work Through Biometrics | TechCrunch
As a mechanism for payment, the credit card remains just as hardy as ever. It has so far defied the threat of mobile phones, and less plausibly, QR codes, among many other forms of payment.
One YC-backed startup is betting that fingerprints and other forms of biometric identification may be the payment method of the future though. Called PayTango, they’re partnering with local universities to offer a quick and easy way for students to use their fingerprints to pay instead of credit cards.
The four-person team is basically almost fresh out of Carnegie Mellon University. The co-founders, Brian Groudan, Kelly Lau-Kee, Umang Patel and Christian Reyes, graduating later this summer and have experience in human-computer interaction and information systems.
They built an initial prototype with a fingerprint scanner and credit card reader with off-the-shelf parts for between $1,500 and $1,700. They’re bringing the costs down after iterating on it for 10 weeks and they have a working version of it at three locations on the Carnegie Mellon campus.
“The very earliest product was just basic,” said CEO Umang Patel. “But it was a great product to get out there and users responded to it very early on.”
The on-boarding process for users is really easy. They touch the fingerpad with their index and middle fingers and if they’re not in the system already, PayTango automatically detects that. It will ask them to swipe a card to associate with their fingerprints and then enter in their cell phone number. That sign-up process made it fast enough for 100 students to sign-up within four hours on campus.