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Google speeds WebP image format, brings animation support to Chrome

Google speeds WebP image format, brings animation support to Chrome

Google has built a new version of its WebP software into Chrome to let browsers display its image format 25 percent faster, the company said Friday.

The better performance new libwebp 0.4.0 is part of Google's general effort to speed up the Web, and the new software also uses less memory and fixes an issue that had blocked Google from supporting animated WebP images. The updated WebP support is built into the version of Chrome that's currently in beta.

Animated GIF images, popular on sites such as Tumblr and Imgur, are the last remaining holdout for … Read more

Papers, Please dominates IGF Awards at GDC 2014

Papers, Please dominates IGF Awards at GDC 2014

Many great indie games and AAA titles featured at GDC 2014 were collaborative efforts from highly talented individuals. But Papers, Please proves that there is still room in the gamers' hearts for lone-wolf developers. With an usual narrative, Papers, Please captures the emotional toll of working as an immigration officer in a fictional dystopian country. Using detective skills and powers of observation, players can allow or deny refuge for immigrants trying to get into the nation of Arstotzka.

Lucas Pope drew from personal experience as an American living abroad and applied the skills he acquired at Naughty Dog working on … Read more

Khronos finishes WebCL 1.0 to let Web apps tap into GPU

Khronos finishes WebCL 1.0 to let Web apps tap into GPU

WebGL has been a strong success, bringing hardware-accelerated 3D graphics to the browser. Now the standards group behind it hopes to let Web apps get even more use out of the graphics chip by releasing version 1.0 of an interface called WebCL.

At this week's Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, the Khronos Group standards body announced the ratification and release of WebCL 1.0. WebCL lets programmers run general-purpose tasks on a device's graphics processing unit (GPU) or on a multicore central processing unit (CPU), the main brain in computers and mobile devices.

Just as WebGL … Read more

Mozilla scraps Metro version of Firefox, citing low interest

Mozilla scraps Metro version of Firefox, citing low interest

After more than two years of work, Mozilla has scrapped its effort to build a Metro-specific version of Firefox for Windows 8, saying that users have shown almost no interest.

Microsoft designed what it previously called the Metro interface for touch-screen devices like tablets and introduced it with Windows 8 along with a version of Internet Explorer designed to run on it. Two years ago, after winning a debate with Microsoft over whether it even could be possible to bring a modern third-party browser to Metro, Mozilla embarked on its Firefox for Metro journey.

But it's over for now, … Read more

Google offers new sales options for Chrome Web Store

Google offers new sales options for Chrome Web Store

Google has added new options for developers selling software through its Chrome Web Store.

Those selling software for Google's Chrome browser and Chrome OS operating system now have a variety of new sales possibilities, according to a blog post Tuesday by Chary Chen of the Chrome Web Store team. Among those options are the ability to offer:

Free trials of Chrome extensions and Chrome packaged apps.

Themes that cost money.

Extensions and packaged apps that include in-app payment possibilities.

Subscriptions for Chrome extensions.

Google's Chrome Web Store has brought the app store approach to Web apps and to … Read more

Mozilla works to squeeze more life out of JPEG

Mozilla works to squeeze more life out of JPEG

JPEG, the decades-old image format, shows no signs of disappearing. That's why Mozilla announced a project Wednesday to try to shave another 10 percent off images compressed with the standard.

The non-profit organization behind Firefox announced a project called mozjpeg that aims to compress JPEGs more intelligently. Smaller file sizes means Web pages load faster, and Mozilla is deeply interested in improving the Web's performance.

"Photos can easily make up the bulk of the network traffic for a page load," said senior technology strategist Josh Aas in a blog post. "Reducing the size of these … Read more

Apple releases OS X 10.9.2, security updates for prior versions

Apple releases OS X 10.9.2, security updates for prior versions

Apple has releases OS X 10.9.2 for people running OS X Mavericks, and a couple of security updates for those running Lion and Mountain Lion.

These updates are important ones because they address a number of security bugs, including the recent SSL/TSL vulnerability that could allow an attacker to intercept secure connection data on a local network.

The 10.9.2 update also adds a few new features to Apple's FaceTime and iMessage services in OS X, allowing you to now make and receive FaceTime audio calls, use call waiting for FaceTime, and also block incoming … Read more

Google: Under-the-hood change helps Web apps on Chrome

Google: Under-the-hood change helps Web apps on Chrome

Google has taught Chrome how to walk and chew gum at the same time.

The newest Chrome beta version, 33, includes a feature called concurrent compilation that means the browser takes a smoother, faster trip to an optimized version of the Web page code it's running.

"Concurrent code compilation is another step towards reducing latency in Chrome," said Chrome programmer Yang Guo in a blog post Thursday.

JavaScript performance is crucial to browsers, which increasingly run Web-based apps written in JavaScript, not just load relatively static Web pages.

Concurrent compilation takes advantage of the fact that most … Read more

Boot Camp update brings 64-bit support to Windows drivers

Boot Camp update brings 64-bit support to Windows drivers

Apple has released an updated version of its Boot Camp software to support installations of Windows on a secondary partition of its Mac systems. While Apple does not officially support third-party operating systems and software installed on your Mac, it does provide Boot Camp as an option so people can use Apple's trackpads and other hardware when running in Windows.

The Boot Camp update comes in two versions: one for the latest 2013 model iMac and MacBook systems, and another for all other models.

If you have a mid-2013 MacBook Air, a late-2013 MacBook Pro, or a late-2013 iMac, … Read more

Get in the games with top apps for Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics

Get in the games with top apps for Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics

Now that Bruno Bowl 2014 is over, it's time to turn our attention to the Winter Olympics. The Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics officially kick off this week in Russia, and you can follow the action with these apps. Keep tabs on your favorite athletes and events from anywhere.

NBC Olympics Highlights

Get the latest news, video highlights, previews, and in-depth stories with this app for iOS and Android. You'll find the live-stream schedule, TV listings, and results all in one place, from NBC, the official network for this year's event.

Visa 360 Cam

Ever wonder what the … Read more