'Tron: Legacy' treatments geek up the walls

My friend has tickets to a sneak preview of "Tron: Legacy" on IMAX 3D tonight. I have rarely been so jealous. There's not a single movie I've been this excited about since "Crank 2: High Voltage" hit last year. I'm just insane about "Tron."

And I guess I'm almost insane enough (but not quite) to love this 6x10-foot Tron-themed wall mural that goes on like wallpaper. It's not the kind of thing that would look good at my place (Sam Flynn wouldn't work next to Miss June), but … Read more

This is Daft Punk in 'Tron: Legacy'

"Tron: Legacy" hits theaters 10 weeks from this Friday, and in preparation, Disney is releasing a new piece of Tron-related content every week. This morning brings a desktop wallpaper-size image of French music duo Daft Punk, who did the entire score for the film. Just yesterday, that soundtrack release date was pushed back to December 7--up two weeks from the original late November date.

Along with the image above, Disney also released a 90-second snippet of the title track, "The Game Has Changed," part of which has already been heard in trailers for the film. You … Read more

Tron's long journey back into theaters

Two years ago, near the back of a crowded screening room at Comic-Con, someone managed to record the entire teaser trailer for "Tron: Legacy," which at the time was titled "TR2N." No cameras of any sort were allowed.

The video, which stretched nearly three minutes, featured a high-speed chase on updated versions of Tron's famous lightcycles. It was a visual-effects concept made by a small team of animators before the film went into full production. The goal of that clip--as CNET learned during a "Tron: Legacy" press day Saturday at special-effects house Digital … Read more

Special-effects gurus of 'Tron' keep it real (Q&A)

VENICE, Calif.--Just a few blocks from Venice Beach in Southern California is a rather nondescript warehouse--a few windows, a parking lot decorated with an old basketball hoop. If you drove by, you might mistake it for the Public Storage building on the next block over.

But inside is special effects shop Digital Domain, and the only stored relics you'll find are movie prop miniatures like a replica of the Titanic and a 3-foot-tall Apollo space capsule. The rest of the building is made up of meeting rooms, gadget-filled workstations, two screening theaters, and a server farm that's … Read more

Jeff Bridges on 'Tron,' 3D, and gadget addiction

VENICE, Calif.--Sitting across from me, Jeff Bridges leans back into his chair, looking almost through me as we begin to chat about reprising his role as fictional game developer (and geek icon) Kevin Flynn in "Tron: Legacy."

This past weekend, we're sitting here in an executive office inside Digital Domain, the special-effects studio that's in charge of the dazzling effects seen in the highly anticipated sequel that picks up 28 years after the events of the 1982 classic. The entire room is a light brown and bathed in soft incandescent light, making Bridges, in his … Read more

Twitter's new deceased-user policy vs. Facebook's

Consider it a sign of the times, or even just success that Twitter now has a policy in place to handle ownership of a user's account once they've died.

As expected, interested parties need to send in several pieces of information about how they relate to that person before Twitter will take action. Once the proper credentials have been sent to the company (via e-mail or snail mail), Twitter is then able to do one of two things: either remove a deceased user's account entirely, or provide an archive of all that user's tweets so family … Read more

Firefox, Thunderbird security fixes released

Mozilla published security repairs for Firefox and Thunderbird on Tuesday, which included updates for the legacy versions of both.

Firefox 3.6.7 for Windows, Mac, and Linux fixes 14 security bugs, including eight listed as critical, two high-level bugs, and four moderate ones. The critical bugs addressed problems such as DOM attribute cloning and remote and arbitrary code execution vulnerabilities in plug-in parameters, dangling pointers, and other miscellaneous memory safety hazards. Several stability repairs were also made. Full release notes for Firefox 3.6.7 are available.

Firefox 3.5.11 fixes the same bugs that were addressed in … Read more

'Tron Legacy' gear includes wall-climbing light cycles, glowing controllers

As we headed to a Disney preview of toys and gear for the upcoming "Tron" movie sequel, "Tron Legacy," we were reminded of what Yogurt said in "Spaceballs": "Merchandising, merchandising!"

While we're as excited about Disney's upcoming "Tron" sequel as anybody, it's clear the merchandising push will be fierce and all-encompassing. But if our preview of a few of the upcoming items is any indication, some of them are actually kind of cool, too.

Among the very many pieces of Tron gear available for your shopping pleasure … Read more

Subaru's New EyeSight helps drivers watch road

Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd., better known as the maker of Subaru automobiles, announced that it has completed the development of a new driver aid system called "New EyeSight." The New EyeSight setup is based on Subaru's current old EyeSight system, which debuted in May 2008 and has been available since then in Japanese Subaru vehicles; it features dual forward-facing cameras to give the vehicle stereoscopic vision for pedestrian detection. The new rig integrates with the other driver assist systems to improve overall vehicle safety. How come we never see this sort of tech in Subaru's North … Read more

A modern approach to Java application development

With Java investments in the billions over the last dozen years, it's a safe bet that enterprise companies won't be replacing these systems any time soon. In fact, one could claim Java usage is growing in spite of best efforts to claim otherwise by aficionados of Ruby, PHP, Python, Groovy, Scala, and other dynamic languages.

Red Hat for example reports that its JBoss Java middleware is its fastest growing business. IBM remains heavily invested in its WebSphere Java middleware. And let's not forget Oracle, which not only has the Sun brand (and ergo Java) pending but last year added BEA to the fold.

Java application platforms have been so focused on scalability and efficiency of database-driven applications that they've often ignored what's evolved in the consumer Web: rich user environments, better interactivity, and a mixing of content and data, collaboration and social features--all with much more personal control and empowerment. Efforts like JavaFX have been interesting if not ready for prime time.

But Java is hardly irrelevant, and Benjamin Mestrallet, founder and CEO of eXo Platform, thinks he can change exactly the perception that Java can't be Web 2.0 hip. eXo, which just opened its first U.S. office, is hoping to remake Java from stodgy to socially aware by combining powerful REST-based common services with rich Web 2.0 apps to get the most out of so-called legacy Java apps.

eXo counts a number of very smart people with deep Java roots in their court to make this happen including: Bob Bickel, a founder of Bluestone Software, former head of HP Middleware and former JBoss head of strategy; Edwin Khodabakchian, founder of Collaxa and former VP of Product Management at Oracle; and Sacha Labourey, longtime JBoss CTO and former co-GM of Red Hat Middleware. … Read more