Phoenix Technologies, maker of the humble system BIOS, may not be accustomed to buzz over its latest product introductions, but got it nonetheless on Monday, when it announced HyperSpace, a sort of operating system substitute. Hoping to improve both boot speed and power efficiency in laptops, Phoenix developed HyperSpace to offer instantly available applications. Instead of booting into a on operating system like OS X or Windows, Hyperspace will allow PC vendors to embed certain software programs into their computers that can launch directly from system start-up, paring out the need for an operating system and the wasted time and energy inefficiency that go with it. "For most of us, today’s computing experience is a lot like air travel – offering tremendous possibilities, but plagued with security issues, delays and system failures," said Woody Hobbs, president and CEO of Phoenix Technologies, in a statement. "HyperSpace introduces a new framework to transform the … [Read more...] about Phoenix Technologies Goes into HyperSpace
Thanks to Chinese ownership, a legendary British carmaker is back from the dead. Whether it will rise to a Phoenix-like blaze of glory or sink back into obscurity remains to be seen. MG, maker of classic sports cars like the MGB and TC, is back. The company is already selling cars in China and Europe; it will also unveil a new concept at the 2012 Beijing Motor Show.The MG Icon is a small crossover that looks like the love child of a Mini Countryman and Nissan Juke. Like the Mini, it applies vintage styling cues to a type of vehicle that didn’t exist during the company’s glory days. The contrasting roof is a retro touch, and makes two-tone color options possible. The grille looks like it was pulled off one of MG’s products from the 1960s, as do the taillights.The Icon has plenty of modern touches too. The high side mirrors indicate a high beltline, creating the armored car effect that makes drivers feel safer. Bulging wheel arches make the Icon look sporty, and … [Read more...] about Icon concept takes MG in a radically new direction
The BMW 3 Series will always be the favored car of yuppies and people who can’t afford a 5 Series, but it will also hold great promise for regular fans of speed. That’s because BMW always hands the car over to its M Division, which always turns it into the spectacular M3.Since the launch of the F30 3 Series, fans have been waiting for a new M3. At this week’s Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, they’re getting it. Sort of.BMW is doing things differently this time: Since it’s splitting the two-door coupe and convertible cars off under the new 4 Series moniker, the new M3 coupe is actually an M4.Officially, its the M4 Coupe Concept, but the very shiny coupe you see here is almost identical to the production car people will actually be able to buy. That car will debut at the Detroit auto show in January. The sedan, still called M3, will be mechanically identical.The M4 Coupe comes hot on the heels of the 2014 435i and like previous M3 coupes, it takes … [Read more...] about BMW M4 Coupe Concept’s styling pleases our eyes, but will its performance stir our souls?
Out of all the cars on the New York International Auto Show floor, the Saab Phoenix was the one I wish I could drive or sit in the most. This car means a lot to Saab. Representatives say it is a sign of designs to come from Saab and is called “PhoeniX” because it represents a rebirth for the Saab design philosophy. In the video below, Jason Castriota, the car’s design director, explains what the concept means to him and the brand.“The PhoeniX establishes a new reference point for the future of Saab product design,” said Castriota, Saab Automobile’s Executive Design Director. “It symbolizes a renaissance of the innovative spirit and passion that drove Saab to build its first car. We’re now taking the visual DNA forward with what we call ‘aeromotional’ design, adding emotion, power and fluidity. This design aesthetic will shape and differentiate future models in the Saab portfolio.”More than anything, if we could ditch the … [Read more...] about Saab PhoeniX concept belongs in an F-Zero game
For decades, sci-fi writers have painted a picture of utopia as a crystal-domed city appointed with shiny-steel accents, ultra-modern furniture and gadgets ranging from food replicators to floor-hugging maintenance drones. Tranquility and efficiency extend from work to sex, and the human aging process is "curable," as is every other form of disease.Since the first word of predictive text hit the first page on a printer's press, architects and city planners have tried to paste the dream onto the 3-D parchment of reality.The results to date have been pitted and pitched by the decidedly inefficient and totally anti-tranquil aspects of the messy side of human existence. Still, gallant efforts persist, and with the skyrocketing costs of gas and oil, the blinding increase of ecological disasters, and a future that looks downright threatening to man's very existence, many are once again heralding the idea.Building huge cities and hyperstructures that can house hundreds of thousands of people … [Read more...] about Cities of the Future, Part 1: The Hyperstructure Concept
Seattle has a lot of problems. It rains there constantly, residents have an overarching, new-millennium sense of inferiority toward Portland and now apparently the city is beset with supervillains.Oh wait, that should read: “Supervillain.” Singular. With those quotation marks denoting that this guy isn’t likely to cut the Space Needle in half with his laser eyes any time soon.Before we get to the apparent villain of this piece, a bit of backstory. In January of 2011, Seattle resident Benjamin Fodor began patrolling the streets of the city dressed in a bullet-proof vest, and carrying pepper spray, handcuffs and a stun baton. He does so while wearing a mask. It’s color-coded to match his homemade uniform. He calls himself “Phoenix Jones.” Apparently this makes him a superhero.For the most part Jones is a relatively helpful entity. He breaks up bar fights, catches muggers and prevents crime. However, the police aren’t all that fond of his actions, … [Read more...] about ‘Supervillain’ emerges to challenge Seattle ‘superhero’ Phoenix Jones
In what could potentially be a huge win for Android, Swedish automaker Saab has selected the operating system as the basis of its IQon in-vehicle infotainment system.Saab will open up the API (application programming interface) for IQon to third-party developers and set up an app store to which they can post their apps after approval.Users will be able to download any apps they like from the store, although Saab didn't provide any details about pricing.Saab did not respond to requests for comment by press time.IQon provides an embedded computer platform in a vehicle with a modem that automatically connects to the Internet when the vehicle's owner switches on the ignition.Vehicles equipped with IQon will have an 8-inch touchscreen that provides access to services. These services will include audio and entertainment streaming, on-board music storage and online navigation.It's possible that IQon will also monitor a vehicle's inner workings -- the API Saab plans to issue to third-party … [Read more...] about Android Calls Shotgun in Upcoming Saabs
Former Internet behemoth AOL is dipping its toes back into the email pool and gearing up to take a big plunge.The beta version of Project Phoenix, which became available on Sunday to users who sign up and request an invite, is expected to launch for real in early 2011. While the revamped service isn't intended to be all things to all people, it's not all about email, according to the company."We are up to our necks in in-boxes, so we've brought all of those accounts into one place and built on top of that -- that's the foundation of Phoenix," said Bill Wetherell, director of design for AOL Mail. "This is about integrating in-boxes, not just about email."That may be the overall goal, but Phoenix's email program is formidable, too. Major tech takeaways include a new front-end interface that's more intuitive and designed for multitasking, and new back-end servers and architecture that are built for speed."We're clocking a cached in-box at 1.5 seconds," said Wetherell. "Gmail on a good day … [Read more...] about AOL’s Phoenix Rises in Facebook’s Heavy Shadow
Apple on Tuesday raised the curtain on its next-generation iPhone X, and it so far has been greeted with praise -- though tentative -- from early hands-on reviewers.For the most part, they gave the X kudos for design and build, but reserved their unequivocal endorsements until they could spend more time with the phone."The iPhone X is one of the most exciting phones released this decade -- but not because it offers anything particularly innovative or new," wrote Gareth Beavis for TechRadar."It's exciting because it's the most radical redesign of an iPhone yet," he continued, "tying together a number of key trends in the industry and adding in a level of polish that will attract legions of Apple fans to upgrade, and spend another couple of years in the iCycle."A sore point with many reviewers was the mobile's price. A unit with 64 gigabytes of storage costs US$999 and one with 256 GB costs $1,146.Not all reviewers were annoyed by the pricing, though."The thing that a lot of people want … [Read more...] about First Impressions: iPhone X Garners Lots of Cautious Thumbs Up
There is little doubt that the Internet -- especially Amazon -- has altered the way U.S. consumers think about shopping.E-commerce sales grew 15.6 percent in 2016 and now account for 11.7 percent of all retail sales, according to recent reports. Amazon accounts for a whopping 43 percent of those e-commerce sales.Amazon, in particular, has changed the way consumers think about e-commerce sales, or etail. If you live in a major city like Phoenix, which has a major distribution center, it is not uncommon to order items sold by Amazon and have them delivered the same afternoon.In addition, Amazon has introduced a number of other shopping concepts of late and is moving directly into operating brick-and-mortar stores. Will Amazon's moves bring back the traditional retail shopping experience, or is it gone forever?As a company, one of Amazon's goals is to expand its presence and that of technology in retail.Amazon Locker offers convenient locations for people to pick up amazon packages. … [Read more...] about ANALYSIS Can Amazon Reinvent the Shopping Experience?