Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Yahoo to enable Google and Facebook sign-in on all its Web properties

The Yahoo Network of Web properties will soon let you sign in with your Facebook or Google credentials. The change will go live tomorrow, January 20, and effectively hammers the death knell for Yahoo's continuing identity crisis.

Yahoo first rolled out a federated OpenID login to Flickr back in October, but Google was the only accepted third-party sign-in. With the upcoming change, you will be able to use Facebook and Google across all of Yahoo's Web properties -- which admittedly, after signing the death warrant of a bunch of its sites, is not a whole lot. Still, it means you'll be able to customize your Yahoo search experience, comment on Flickr photos, and play with the awesome Pipes RSS remixing service, all from the comfort of your Facebook sign-in.

Incidentally, you won't be able to use your Facebook or Google details to log into "desktop or mobile clients," which presumably means Yahoo Instant Messenger.

Yahoo to enable Google and Facebook sign-in on all its Web properties originally appeared on Download Squad on Wed, 19 Jan 2011 06:50:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Metabolix Oilseeds Gets $203,000 Grant To Test ?False Flax? As Possible Petroleum Replacement

A Cambridge, Mass. biosciences company that makes plastics, chemicals and energy from renewable crops rather than petroleum, Metabolix, Inc. (NASDAQ: MBLX) today announced that its subsidiary, Metabolix Oilseeds, obtained a $203,000 grant from the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture (or USD $203,614.92) to test a crop called Camelina Sativa, or false flax, as a possible petroleum replacement. Camelina contains oil, fiber and protein with potential uses in nutrition for people and animals, and industrial applications including in biofuels. In 2009, Metabolix, Inc. won a $15 million grant from the USDA Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service (CSREES) to make bioplastics that could replace HDPE, a petroleum-based variety used in bottles and containers, made on commercial scale equipment and at rapid manufacturing speeds...


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Stunning MotorStorm Apocalypse ?3D? trailer unleashed!

The MotorStorm series of action-packed racing games really seemed to come out of nowhere with the launch of the PlayStation 3, and the franchise has gone on to effortlessly claim the crown in its unique offshoot of the off-road racing genre.

With the release of MotorStorm Apocalypse in March and April this year, developer Evolution Studios looks set to not only grip that crown even more tightly, but also conclusively stomp its authority in the videogame world.

MotorStorm Apocalypse Screenshot 2

The developer has just released a new trailer for its urban ?off-road? racer and it?s a stunner, showcasing the game?s crumbling, dangerous and explosive environments as a dozen daredevil racers battle their way through the city:

MotorStorm Apocalypse ? ?3D? Trailer

A stereoscopic 3D version of this trailer will become available on the PlayStation Store for you to view on a 3D TV.

MotorStorm Apocalypse is scheduled for release on March 16th this year in Europe and the UK, and then on April 12th in North America.

El33tonline?s previous coverage of MotorStorm Apocalypse will provide you with a good few batches of screenshots and videos, as well as more information on this ambitious and extremely exciting action racing title.


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Revised Honda Accord for Europe will debut in Geneva

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2011 Honda Accord (Europe)
2011 Honda Accord for Europe - Click above for high-res image gallery

Honda has announced that it will use the world stage of the Geneva Motor Show to pull the covers off its latest Accord sedan and wagon for Europe. Just to be clear, this car is very different from the Accord offered in the United States. In fact, the European Accord is very similar to the Acura TSX that's available Stateside. 'Course, we do wish we could get the European Accord's fascia on our TSX, but we digress...

So what's new? Naturally, the exterior styling has been revised ever so slightly, mostly to the front fascia and headlights. Honda has also added what it calls Active Cornering Lights that illuminate when the steering wheel is turned more than 90 degrees and a High-Beam Support System that uses a CMOS camera embedded in the windscreen that senses when to turn the brights on and off.

There are also three new colors: Alabaster Silver, Graphite Lustre and Celestial Blue Pearl, while inside you'll find a few detail updates to the finishes, including red interior lighting for the Type S models and blue interior lighting for all other trims.

Perhaps more important are subtle changes to the car's 2.2-liter i-DTEC diesel engine (mostly the rather nebulous "reduced internal frictional losses") that, coupled with a "host of underbody aerodynamic aids," increase fuel economy and reduce carbon emissions, if even just a small amount.

As for the stuff you can't see on the surface, Honda says it has quited the cabin and revised the dual-mode dampers for greater high-speed stability and "a significant improvement in ride quality, even on poor road surfaces." If you like what you've read so far, you're bound to love the entire press release, which can be found after the break.

[Source: Honda]

Continue reading Revised Honda Accord for Europe will debut in Geneva

Revised Honda Accord for Europe will debut in Geneva originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 26 Jan 2011 14:03:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Kongregate Arcade for Android is a pocket gamer's dream come true

If you're a fan of casual games, chances are good you've visited Kongregate once or twice before. The site is packed with addictive little Flash games, many of which have been featured before as Time Wasters here on Download Squad. Now, there's a Kongregate Arcade app for Android which lets you take the games with you on your mobile device.

Fire up Kongregate Arcade, browse or search for a game, download it to your Android device, and you're ready to play. The games are all mobile-optimized, and those we tested worked quite nicely with touchscreen input. There are plenty of great games available via Kongregate Arcade, like Monster Slayers, Ink Ball, and Assembler. If you've been saying to yourself "I wish there was a way I could game, chew up my battery, and devour all the free space on my microSD card all at the same time!" your prayers have finally been answered!

Android 2.2 or better is required, as is Adobe Flash (obviously). Kongregate is a free download from the Android Market -- hit the link below to install, or take the jump for the QR Code!

Download Kongregate Arcade for Android [AppBrain]

Continue reading Kongregate Arcade for Android is a pocket gamer's dream come true

Kongregate Arcade for Android is a pocket gamer's dream come true originally appeared on Download Squad on Tue, 18 Jan 2011 09:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Platinum Games reveals online combat game, Max Anarchy

MadWorld Jack

News from Japanese game magazine Famitsu has revealed that Platinum Games (Bayonetta, Vanquish) is currently working on a new title for both Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 entitled ?Max Anarchy.?

Rather than focussing on a single protagonist as in their previous titles, this game will feature an online mode with support for a ?large number? of players, according to Platinum Games? Atsushi Inaba.

That doesn?t mean Max Anarchy won?t contain a singleplayer mode, though, and Inaba says that the game will indeed still have a solid story, while it sounds like the online modes will be knitted into that singleplayer experience, with options for cooperative gameplay and free-for-all combat.

Inaba is confident that Max Anarchy will provide a style of game that is largely unattended by developers, and when asked to describe the genre and style, he said that it was a ?fighting game? but with ?multiplayer melee action.?

Judging by the name of the game and what sounds to be a setting where gangs and groups of fighters have formed to survive, it all sounds very ?Mad Max?ish, and could possibly be set in some sort of post-apocalyptic world. Most-suited to this ?kill or be killed? universe is Jack, the star of Platinum Games? first title on the Wii, MadWorld. Jack will join a cast of playable characters in Max Anarchy as the developer wanted to use him again.

Platinum Games hopes to release Max Anarchy by the end of the year, with SEGA handling publishing duties once again. More official information on Max Anarchy (as well as a proper announcement) is expected a little later this year.



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NASCAR to Use Smaller Restrictor Plate at Next Week's Daytona Test

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DaytonaTeams will be issued smaller restrictor plates for NASCAR's upcoming Jan. 20-22 Goodyear Tire Test at Daytona International Speedway. And at least one Sprint Cup Series crew chief thinks it's a good idea to slow the cars on the newly paved 2.5-mile superspeedway.

"I think the decision was made to slow down the speeds because the speeds were too high at the first test,'' said Pat Tryson, veteran crew chief of the Michael Waltrip Racing No. 56 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota.

"It's a good move on the side of safety because no one wants to see a car go airborne at the potential speeds that could be generated with the plate they had last month. It will be better for the driver and better for the fans in the stands. Safety always comes first.''

The new carburetor restrictor plate will have a 29/32-inch hole compared to the 30/32-inch hole the cars used last month in the first major test session on the fresh pavement. Speeds reached 197 mph in December with 17-car drafts.

"By slowing down the cars, it will make the draft bigger and tighter,'' Tryson said. " Before with a little more power, the cars would spread out a little bit. I think now, we can expect to see the cars a lot closer together and more in one pack versus two, three or four.

"It's going to make for some great racing for sure because I expect to see more three, maybe four-wide racing at Daytona which is exactly what we saw at Talladega Superspeedway. It's going to be a lot of fun for everyone to watch."


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Google joins the privacy fray, offers up extension that blacklists tracking cookies

Hot on the heels of Mozilla's proposed Do Not Track solution, Google has launched Keep My Opt-Outs, an extension that blocks tracking cookies from targeted advertising providers.

The extension, which is simply a free download from the Chrome Web Store, takes an utterly brute-force approach to the problem. It has a blacklist of known targeted advertisers, and it simply blocks any cookies originating from their domains. The blacklist will be regularly updated as advertising companies adopt the industry's self-regulated privacy standards.

Google notes that the extension is only targeted at U.S.-based ad companies, but a blacklist with European and international advertisers is in the works. The extension will also soon be updated to provide granular control over which cookies are kiboshed, so you'll be able to pick and choose which sites get to show you targeted advertising.

Google joins the privacy fray, offers up extension that blacklists tracking cookies originally appeared on Download Squad on Mon, 24 Jan 2011 19:10:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Cirago launches CMC3200 media player, NUS2000 USB network storage link

The media streamer waters are awfully crowded, but Cirago's paying no mind to that. The company has this month introduced its new CMC3200 media player, hailed as the only 1080p system to offer 2TB of built-in storage, a WiFi adapter and a full year of PlayOn goodness. It's priced at $299.99 with the hard drive included, and it'll sport all of the basic functions already found on the 500GB and 1TB CiragoTV Platinum devices. In related news, the outfit's also dishing out its NUS2000 Link+ adapter, which provides remote access capabilities to up to four USB-connected storage devices. It's a compact device that's obviously set to rival Pogoplug's stable of NAS enablers, boasting a $100 price point and a foursome of USB 2.0 sockets. Moving on, Cirago's also announcing that its NUS1000 USB Network Storage Link features remote access, so there goes your excuse to upgrade. Hit the source link for the whole schpeel.

Continue reading Cirago launches CMC3200 media player, NUS2000 USB network storage link

Cirago launches CMC3200 media player, NUS2000 USB network storage link originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 26 Jan 2011 07:48:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Top Gear Albania?

The blokes over at Top Gear are starting to make a habit of being spotted in obscure settings all over the world. Guess they?re really taking advantage of all those frequent flyer miles, eh?

A little over a month ago during their taping of the show?s Christmas Special, the whole crew of Top Gear was spotted in Israel sporting their own versions of custom drop-top roadsters on their way to meeting the baby Jesus in Bethlehem. We all know how that turned out.

This time around, the troika of Clarkson, Hammond, and May have been spotted in Albania. That?s right. Albania.We can only assume that the three chaps were taping an episode of the show in the country, after word leaked courtesy of Albarent, a local rental agency that was responsible for their transportation. According to Albarent, as soon as the hosts and the crew arrived at Tirana Airport, the rental agency went ahead and picked them before driving them to Saranda on the ?Albanian Riviera? with a rental fleet including a Mercedes S350 VIP-LOUNGE, Hyundai H-1 VIP-LOUNGE 11+1 Minibus, and an IRISBUS IVECO Tourist Class 19+1 Minibus. Wow, that’s quite a motley crew.

Unfortunately, details as to what happened on their Albanian adventure have been kept under wraps. For us to find out, we?re going to have to tune in to the show, which quite frankly, we?ve never had a problem doing.

Top Gear Albania? originally appeared on on Tuesday, 25 January 2011 14:00 EST.

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Report: BMW and Mini to share plug-in hybrids

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Mini badge

From the whispers we're hearing, BMW plans on mixing its DNA with Mini even further. The Bavarian-obsessed minds at BimmerFile are reporting that the German automaker is currently hard at work on a partnership with Getrag to produce a new hybrid powertrain to be shared between both BMW and Mini. Details are skimpy at the moment, but BimmerFile has ventured a few guesses as to what we can expect from the platform when it debuts. Word is that the system will likely boast a plug-in capacity that it will probably show up on larger Mini models like the Countryman and its rumored BMW counterpart.

There's also some indication that the hybridized drivetrain will keep the current 120 horsepower four-cylinder at the heart of the system. The move is only part of the BMW master plan to keep Mini as efficient as possible. BimmerFile also hints that Mini may see a small turbocharged three-cylinder engine debut in a few short years with more horsepower, less weight and greater efficiency than the current four-cylinder line up. Join those thoughts with the rumored arrival of a diesel Cooper on American soil, and it begins to look like Mini will be in a good position as fuel prices continue to edge upwards.

[Source: BimmerFile]

Report: BMW and Mini to share plug-in hybrids originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 25 Jan 2011 16:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Thunderbird Conversations 2.0 alpha 2 released

Late in 2010, Mozilla delivered the first alpha of Conversations for its Thunderbird email client. The add-on brings Gmail-like threading to your Thunderbird inbox, and it worked quite nicely in our testing. As is the case with an alpha release, however, there were loads of bugs to squash and features to to tweak -- which Mozilla has been doing ever since.

There's now a second alpha of Conversations available to download and it brings a number of updates to the handy quick reply feature. Mozilla also says that "If you've been reluctant to use Thunderbird Conversations because some bug would annoy you, there's good chances it's been fixed."

Conversations alpha 2 also adds a "send and archive" option, and we're glad to see that -- it's one of our favorite Gmail Labs features, after all.

Download the Conversations add-on for Mozilla Thunderbird
(alpha 2)

Thunderbird Conversations 2.0 alpha 2 released originally appeared on Download Squad on Fri, 14 Jan 2011 09:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Opera Web browser coming to Sony TVs and Blu-ray players

While it might not have a huge share of the desktop Web browser market, Opera certainly knows how to score deals with OEMs. Today, Opera announced that it has entered into a partnership with Sony to deliver an embedded browser on TVs and Blu-ray players. As Opera states in its official post, the integration will bring "web applications, widgets, full web browsing and emerging standards such as HTML5, HbbTV and OIPF" to your computer-free home theater.

From in-dash systems in your new vehicle, to your Wii, to your 60" Sony LCD, Opera has steadily grown into a force to be reckoned with in the world of non-computer browsing. Where will the Norwegian browser wind up next?

Opera Web browser coming to Sony TVs and Blu-ray players originally appeared on Download Squad on Thu, 20 Jan 2011 16:10:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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LauncherPro for Android updated, brings fancy home screen transitions (video)

LauncherPro, the fan-favorite Android home screen replacement, has been updated! This is not the much-hyped complete rewrite of the codebase -- that's coming soon! -- but it does bring one of the most-requested features: home screen transitions.

Rather than tell you all about them, we've made a video that shows off the four new Compiz-like transitions -- it's embedded after the break. Suffice it to say, they're very, very sexy. And elastic-y. The other thing this update ushers in is even smoother app drawer scrolling, which is also shown in the video (though it really is hard to say, objectively, whether it's smoother than before!)

You can download LauncherPro from AppBrain, or scan the QR code after the break.

Continue reading LauncherPro for Android updated, brings fancy home screen transitions (video)

LauncherPro for Android updated, brings fancy home screen transitions (video) originally appeared on Download Squad on Fri, 21 Jan 2011 10:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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[Contest] YouMail Social Voicemail - Win 1 of 6 premium subscriptions

YouMail not too long ago sent out a rather awesome update to their visual voicemail application, making it more social. YouMail now allows users to easily share voicemail not only through e-mail or text messages, but also by posting them directly to Facebook and Twitter. Great for those times when you getting those funny voicemail messages or just have one that you want to hang onto forever. Some other new features were added as well, full breakdown is below:

  • Simple Sharing - With just a couple of clicks, users can now easily post voicemail on their Facebook wall, and tweet voicemails using existing Android twitter clients, like HTC’s Peep.
  • Smart Reply - YouMail automatically maps incoming phone numbers to e-mail addresses, so users can easily reply to an incoming voicemail with an e-mail or text message, either directly through the YouMail client itself, or through other messaging clients like Gmail – with the reply automatically including a link to the original voicemail to provide context.
  • Expanded Caller ID - Whenever a caller leaves a message, YouMail now pulls and displays incoming caller photos from the phone’s address book and the user’s Facebook account – giving users truly visual voicemail. YouMail also provides the caller’s city and state, in addition to their phone number and name.

Conventional, carrier offered voicemail is rather limited when you compare it to YouMail, add on the transcription service and you've got a pretty sweet system for controlling your voicemail. You can hit the download after the break to try out YouMail or you can check out the Android Contest Forums for your chance to win 1 - of 6 premium subscriptions YouMail so kindly provided us.

[Contest] YouMail Social Voicemail - Win 1 of 6 premium subscriptions posted originally by Android Central

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Nokia's leaked MeeGo device resembles dual-core ST-Ericsson U8500 reference platform

Yesterday's leaked image of a purported Nokia tablet device seems to have been more informative than we initially believed it to be. An eagle-eyed forum member over on mobile-review has spotted the similarity between it and a reference platform for ST-Ericsson's U8500 system-on-chip. Last we heard, that little powerhouse was running a pair of 1.2GHz ARM Cortex-A9 cores, so excuse us if we find the prospect of it driving Nokia's next flagship a rather exciting one. You can see video of the reference device in question after the break -- it ends on the delicious and unequivocal assertion from the ST-Ericsson rep that Nokia has signed up to deliver the U8500 in an upcoming device. Bear in mind, however, that the video is from November of last year and we still don't know for sure that the Nokia slate above is its MeeGo progenitor or just a prototype. Either way, the U8500 is expected in smartphones at some point in the first half of this year, which kind of fits Nokia's roadmap, no?

[Image credit: Cor72z]

Continue reading Nokia's leaked MeeGo device resembles dual-core ST-Ericsson U8500 reference platform

Nokia's leaked MeeGo device resembles dual-core ST-Ericsson U8500 reference platform originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 25 Jan 2011 08:01:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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New Homefront screens showcase helicopters and tanks

THQ has released a batch of shiny new screenshots for Homefront, the publisher?s upcoming first-person shooter.

Homefront Banner Image

Homefront is set during the year 2027 in a North Korean occupied United States of America (you can read our preview to find out more if you like). The game is scheduled to be released across North America on the 8th of March 2011, with UK, Europe and Australia following on the 20th of March 2011. It will be available for the Xbox 360, PS3 and PC.

Take a gander at the screenshots below to see if Homefront will crack the nod for your gaming wishlist this year.

Homefront Screenshot 1

Homefront Screenshot 2

Homefront Screenshot 3

Homefront Screenshot 4

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