Category Archives: Electronics

NHL 15 Review (PS3 and Xbox 360)

ea_sports_announces_patrice_bergeron_as_fan-selected_nhl_15_cover_athlete

It is a little less than three weeks until the NHL season kicks off on October 8th and that means NHL video games are out, or should I say EA’s NHL game is out. How does NHL 15 match up against NHL 14? Read the review to find out.

Read the rest of this entry

Advertisements

The Better Business Bureau warns cell phone users of scam

I am posting the info from the Boston BBB site, but this will probably spread to a national alert before long so I am posting it now so that people can be alert of the scam since I have gotten calls from these numbers and thankfully did not answer. The main thing to do if you get contacts by a number you don’t know is to let it go to voice mail, it is the easiest and best way to screen calls. If it is a local number than it might be alright to answer it, for example I live in Rhode Island in the USA so if I get a call from a 401 area code than I know that I can probably answer it and have it be safe, but if it is a number from out of state I am way less likely to answer the call especially since most of the contacts I have out of state I have the number stored in my phone and I know it is okay to answer.

Essentially in a nutshell all you have to do is use common sense, and if you are not caught up on proper phone safety tips then I recommend you go to a web site and read up on the basics of keeping yourself away from becoming a victim of a scam, because it happens far too often and it really doesn’t need to. And the sickening part is that people target the desperate and vulnerable such as people looking for help or the elderly who may not have the mental where abouts to know better than to look for fraud. One of these days ideally we can have our peace of mind back. But with electronics being so easy to access it will probably be a long time until order is restored.

The Better Business Bureau is warning cell phone users in Massachusetts, Maine, Rhode Island, and Vermont about a scam that can result in a $20 charge.

Users have been receiving calls from a unknown caller that hangs up after one ring. When the owner of the cell phone tries to call the number back they are billed $19.95 for an international call fee.

Some people hear music or advertising as they are unknowingly connected to a caller-paid toll service or a line out of the country. This practice has become known as cramming

If you are victim of this scam you are advised to contact your cell phone carrier immediately and check your bill for unauthorized charges.

The Caribbean area codes that appear on the caller ID have been reported to be from the Dominican Republic (809), Jamaica (876), British Virgin Islands (284), Grenada (473), Antigua (268), Dominica (767) and more.

BBB advises the following tips to avoid the scam:

· Don’t Answer Unknown Calls. If you don’t recognize an out-of-state telephone number on your caller ID, ignore it.

· Add Restrictions to Your Account. Contact your service provider to see if you can restrict third-party billing on your account. Inform other users on your cell phone plan about this scam, and to ignore phone numbers they do not recognize.

· Understand Your Bills. Be sure to keep track of what services you pay for, that way you will be able to determine if any charges are unauthorized. By keeping a close eye on monthly statements, you will be less likely to become victim of these scams. Monitoring your bill is the best way to determine whether or not you’ve been affected. The sooner you spot any unexpected charges, the sooner you can stop them.

· Report Incorrect Charges Promptly. Many cardholders are protected by zero liability policies set in place by credit card companies. Request a new card if you notice unauthorized charges. Fraudulent charges mean your card information has been compromised. Be on the safe side and request a new card. Always be cautious about disclosing your account number on the telephone or online unless you know the person you’re dealing with represents a reputable company.

For more information you can trust, visit us at bbb.org/boston.

Java Programming: Basic 2D Array

/*
Name: Kevin Whetstone
Date: 11/15/13
Program: Basic 2D Array
Description: For Loop, and Array
**/

//professor’s code
import java.util.Scanner;
import java.util.Random;

public class GridPractice
{

public static void main(String[] args)
{
//declarations
Scanner in = new Scanner(System.in);
Random  generator = new Random();
int [][] grid;    //un-instantiated grid
int size = 0;    //number of rows and columns

//get size of grid – no validation & instantiate
System.out.print(“Enter size of grid: “);
size = in.nextInt();
grid = new int[size][size];
//end of professor’s code

//beginning of my own code:

//fill grid with random number from 1..99
System.out.println();
for (int row=0; row<size; row++)
{
for (int col=0; col<size; col++)
{
grid[row][col] = generator.nextInt(100); //random numbers 0.99 – not 100
}
}

//print grid with formatting to align
System.out.println();
System.out.print(“Random values assigned to ” + size + ” by ” + size + ” grid.\n”);
for(int row = 0; row < size; row++)
{
for(int col = 0; col < size; col++)
{
System.out.printf(“%4d”, + grid[row][col]);
}
System.out.println();
}

//print each row sum
System.out.println();

int rowSum = 0;

System.out.print(“Row    Sum\n”);
System.out.print(“———-\n”);
for(int row = 0; row < size; row++)
{
for(int col = 0; col < size; col++)
{
rowSum += grid[row][col];
}

System.out.printf(“%3d”, + row);
System.out.printf(“%6d”, + rowSum);
System.out.println();
rowSum = 0;
}

//print each column sum
System.out.println();

int colSum = 0;

System.out.print(“Col    Sum\n”);
System.out.print(“———-\n”);
for(int col = 0; col < size; col++)
{
for(int row = 0; row < size; row++)
{
colSum += grid[row][col];
}

System.out.printf(“%3d”, + col);
System.out.printf(“%6d”, + colSum);
System.out.println();
colSum = 0;
}

//print two diagonal sums
int upperLeft2LowerRight = 0;
int upperRight2LowerLeft = 0;

for(int col = 0; col < grid[0].length; col++)
{
for(int row = 0; row < grid[0].length; row++)
{
if(row == col)
{
upperLeft2LowerRight += grid[row][col];
}
}
}

for(int row = 0; row < grid[0].length; row++)
{
for(int col = 0; col < grid[0].length; col++)
{
if(!(row == col))
{
upperRight2LowerLeft += grid[row][col];
}
}

}
System.out.print(“Diagonal from upper left to lower right is ” + upperLeft2LowerRight);
System.out.print(“\nDiagonal from upper right to lower left is ” + upperRight2LowerLeft);
}
}

You can test with any number from 1 to 99, and I will start with 2

Here is the output

2Darray

Acer CEO Steps Down and They Also Lost Almost A Half Of A Billion Dollars Last Quarter

According to a Press Release Acer CEO J.T. Wang is stepping down as CEO. Below you can read the release in it’s entirety.

Acer announces that the resignation of J.T. Wang, Chairman and CEO, has been approved by its board of directors. Wang shall remain in chairmanship until the end of his tenure next June. The Board and The Search Committee also agreed that Corporate President Jim Wong will succeed Wang as the new CEO from January 1, 2014. A comprehensive restructuring plan has been formulated by the Acer management team, and without delay, the Board will commence with its corporate transformation.

J.T. Wang, chairman and CEO of Acer, said, “Acer encountered many complicated and harsh challenges in the past few years. With the consecutive poor financial results, it is time for me to hand over the responsibility to a new leadership team to path the way for a new era.”

Acer’s board of directors stated, “We are very grateful for Wang’s contribution and hard work. The past two to three years have been extremely tough for Acer due to the rapidly changing industry and market conditions. We fully respect Wang’s decision to step down; however, in the interest of ensuring company stability and a smooth transition during this latest restructuring and transformation, we have asked J.T. to remain to complete his tenure as Chairman which ends in June 2014.”

Wang elaborated, “Together with the management team, we have crafted a far-reaching plan for Acer’s transformation. I wish to thank the board members for their support and to Jim for assuming the CEO duties. I feel optimistic toward Acer’s future. The management team promises to carry out the internal restructuring and will work closely with the Board on the corporate transformation.”

Acer’s Board has set up a Transformation Advisory Committee with board member Stan Shih as Chairman and Acer co-founder George Huang as executive secretary. The committee will propose changes in the company vision, strategy, and execution plans for the Board’s approval. They will work with the management team to carry out the transformation to increase shareholder value. To support new development needs, the Board has approved the issue of 136 million new common shares for a capital increase in cash (approximately 4.8% of total shares).

Stan Shih stated, “After I retired from Acer I shifted my attention to promoting public interests. But when J.T. tendered his resignation, the Board turned to me for help. In consideration of personal social responsibility and for Acer’s onward sustainability, I agreed to take on the duty to help the management team with a smooth handover during this transition period.”

Shih added, “After making structural adjustments, we will introduce more competitive products within the existing PC, tablet, and smartphone business and stabilize our market share. This will be the basis of our transformation and for developing new business opportunities.”

Acer’s personnel and business restructuring plans include reducing manpower, product plan termination with related product tooling and legal fees, resulting in a one-time cost of US$150M which is expected to be reported in the Q4’13 financial results. Acer will cut its worldwide employees by 7% resulting in OPEX savings of US$100M annually from 2014.

And according to its earnings report Acer lost about $443M last quarter. Below you can read that release as well.

Acer’s financial results for Q3 2013, approved by its Board of Directors, are: Consolidated Revenue of NT$92.15B (US$3.11B), up 3.1% quarter-over-quarter and down 11.8% year-over-year; an Operating Loss of NT$2.57B (US$86.61M). In addition, due to a non-cash related intangible asset impairment of NT$9.94B (US$335.12M), profit after tax was NT$-13.12B (US$-442.19M), and earnings per share was NT$-4.82.

Q3’s operating loss was mainly due to the gross margin impact of gearing up for the Windows 8.1 sell in and the related management of inventory. In addition, in Q3, there were one time compensation payments related to the long standing eMachines consumers litigation. This is now settled.
The intangible asset impairment loss, which includes trademarks and goodwill, is NT$9.94B (US$335.13M).This impairment, which covers the Gateway, Packard Bell, Founder, iGware and ETen brands, is made in accordance with IFRS (International Financial Reporting Standards) and is reflective of changes in business strategy. The impairment is a non-cash charge and has no impact on Acer’s business operation and working capital.

Acer’s consolidated revenue for the first three quarters is NT$273.50B (US$9.22B), down 16.6% year-over-year; operating losses for this period are NT$3.15B (US$106.3M). Due to the impact of the intangible asset impairment of NT$9.94B (US$335.13M), PAT is NT$-12.95B (US$-436.42M), and EPS is NT$-4.76. After the impairment of intangible assets, Acer’s net value per share is NT$23.1.
Looking at Q4, due to the adjustment on brand strategy, shipments for Acer’s notebooks, tablet PCs and Chromebooks are expected to decrease by 10% compared to Q3, however, the gross margin is expected to improve.
Notes:

  • The spot rate as of November 5, 2013 was used — US$1: NT$29.67.
  • Acer Inc. consolidated revenue includes revenues from other companies in which Acer Inc. has 50% or more ownership, and already deducts any revenues between Acer Inc. and these companies to avoid double-counting.

Things are looking kind of shoddy for Acer, which is too bad because I had an Acer laptop and it was pretty decent. Hopefully the company can find its financial footing and figure it out before it’s too late.

Adobe Hacked

Today Adobe announced that 2.9 Million user accounts were compromised by hackers. Adobe has set up a page with information which can be accessed here. The following text is from the blog post about the hack.

Cyber attacks are one of the unfortunate realities of doing business today. Given the profile and widespread use of many of our products, Adobe has attracted increasing attention from cyber attackers. Very recently, Adobe’s security team discovered sophisticated attacks on our network, involving the illegal access of customer information as well as source code for numerous Adobe products. We believe these attacks may be related.

Our investigation currently indicates that the attackers accessed Adobe customer IDs and encrypted passwords on our systems. We also believe the attackers removed from our systems certain information relating to 2.9 million Adobe customers, including customer names, encrypted credit or debit card numbers, expiration dates, and other information relating to customer orders. At this time, we do not believe the attackers removed decrypted credit or debit card numbers from our systems. We deeply regret that this incident occurred. We’re working diligently internally, as well as with external partners and law enforcement, to address the incident. We’re taking the following steps:

  • As a precaution, we are resetting relevant customer passwords to help prevent unauthorized access to Adobe ID accounts. If your user ID and password were involved, you will receive an email notification from us with information on how to change your password. We also recommend that you change your passwords on any website where you may have used the same user ID and password.
  • We are in the process of notifying customers whose credit or debit card information we believe to be involved in the incident. If your information was involved, you will receive a notification letter from us with additional information on steps you can take to help protect yourself against potential misuse of personal information about you. Adobe is also offering customers, whose credit or debit card information was involved, the option of enrolling in a one-year complimentary credit monitoring membership where available.
  • We have notified the banks processing customer payments for Adobe, so that they can work with the payment card companies and card-issuing banks to help protect customers’ accounts.
  • We have contacted federal law enforcement and are assisting in their investigation.

We are also investigating the illegal access to source code of numerous Adobe products. Based on our findings to date, we are not aware of any specific increased risk to customers as a result of this incident. For more information, please see the blog post here.

We value the trust of our customers. We will work aggressively to prevent these types of events from occurring in the future. Again, we deeply regret any inconvenience this may cause you. If you would like additional information, please refer to Adobe’s Customer Support page.

Brad Arkin
Chief Security Officer

So if you have an account you should attempt to contact Adobe as soon as possible so that you can be taken care of.

MSI Unveils the GP Series, the Ideal Combination of Mobile Productivity, Entertainment and Gaming

Exceptional on-the-go performance featuring Intel® Core™ i5 processor, NVIDIA® graphics and SteelSeries gaming keyboard now available starting from $899.99

City of Industry, Calif. – September 30, 2013 – MSI Computer Corp, leading manufacturer of computer hardware products and solutions, announces the availability of GP Series, the ideal combination of on-the-go productivity, multimedia entertainment and gaming performance.

 

MSI - GP70

 

The GP Series, currently comprised of one 17-inch and two 16-inch models, come equipped with either Intel® Core™ i7  or Core™ i5 processors, NVIDIA® GeForce® GT740M graphics and 8 GB of DDR3 RAM, giving them enough power to blaze through any task.  MSI’s newest laptops are also a multimedia lover’s dream, combining Sound Blaster Cinema, Matrix Display and Audio Boost technology with gold-flashed audio jacks to pump out crystal clear surround sound, connect to up to two additional monitors and maximize sound quality to create a more immersive experience.

 

“The GP Series is designed to give the mobile user a balanced combination of processing power, graphics performance and gaming components,” stated Andy Tung, vice president of sales for MSI Pan America Region.  “MSI understands that mobile professionals also need a unit that delivers incredible multimedia experience and enough power to handle the newest games.”

 

MSI - GP60

 

Part of MSI’s award winning line of professional and gaming notebooks, the GP Series also features SteelSeries keyboard, up to 1TB of hard disk, Giga LAN network and multiple USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 ports for easy connectivity.  Both the GP70 and GP60 models are currently available starting from $899.99 at all major e-tailers and retailers.

 

For more information about the GP Series or the entire line of G series gaming notebooks, please visit http://www.msimobile.com or www.usgaming.msi.com.

 

GP Series Full Specs

 

MSI - GP Specs

 

About MSI

Founded in 1986, MSI designs, manufactures and markets superior technology solutions and products, including Tablets, Notebook PCs, All-in-One PCs, and PC components including IPCs, Servers, Motherboards and Graphic Cards.  Committed to innovation and style, MSI products are available in more than 120 countries and employ more than 14,000 people worldwide.  To learn more about MSI’s complete line of products, visit us.msi.com or follow us on Facebook at facebook.com/MSI.ComputerUS and Twitter at http://twitter.com/#!/msiUSA.

Microsoft to acquire Nokia’s devices & services business, license Nokia’s patents and mapping services

Sept. 03, 2013

REDMOND, Washington and ESPOO, Finland – Sept. 3, 2013 – Microsoft Corporation and Nokia Corporation today announced that the Boards of Directors for both companies have decided to enter into a transaction whereby Microsoft will purchase substantially all of Nokia’s Devices & Services business, license Nokia’s patents, and license and use Nokia’s mapping services.

Take Two Earnings Reports (released July 30th)

Taketwo_logo.svg

TakeTwoEarnings

Sony Earnings

Sony-logo-1

13q1_sony

Samsung Earnings Report Q2 2013 (PDF File)

Galaxy_note_II_Gray_front_S_Pen21

Samsung Earnings Q2 2013

Microsoft Earnings Report

MSFT_logo_rgb_C-Gray_D

PressReleaseFY13Q4

 

Zynga releases Earnings Report

zynga-logo

ZNGA_News_2013_7_25_General_Releases

%d bloggers like this: