digitizer posts on CNET - Page 6


Spotify: We've paid out $1 billion in royalties since launch

Spotify has launched a new Web site in an effort to make its business model more transparent to artists and other music professionals. Along the way, the company also announced interesting details on just how much cash it doles out.

According to Spotify, its new site is designed to provide additional insight into its operation through the use of data and business analysis. As part of that, Spotify said on Monday that it has issued $1 billion in royalties since its inception in 2009. At this time last year, its total royalty payout was at $500 million, meaning during 2013 … Read more

Mall of the future? eBay's new storefronts can gather your data

SAN FRANCISCO -- Uri Minkoff, CEO of fashion brand Rebecca Minkoff, climbed through an opening in a wall leading to an empty retail space inside the Westfield Shopping Centre in downtown San Francisco. It was an unexpected sight: The stylish Minkoff, sporting a slim-fitted blazer and designer jeans, checking out the dark room, construction material strewn about.

But Minkoff doesn't care about the room itself; he cares about the entrance, where there is a computer setup that, he hopes, will boost his sales this holiday season. That's where potential shoppers will touch a piece of glass, iPad style, … Read more

Black Friday deal week: The big day

Happy National Consumerism Day, everyone! By which I mean, of course, Black Friday. Feel like maybe it's lost its mojo? Like you couldn't possibly discover any deals better than what you see all year long? Think again. I come to you bearing not only some surprisingly excellent bargains, but also a smattering of Cheapskate exclusives. Starting with this one:

Talk to the hand You know how it's winter? And you know what a hassle it is to hold your phone up to your ear when it's freezing cold out? Forget that -- just hold your gloved … Read more

Eat your Instagrams in marshmallow form

Some Instagrams look good enough to eat, especially when they're glorious food photos. You could just pop them in your mouth. With a little assist from Boomf, your Instagram-eating dreams could come true.

You start by connecting your Instagram account with Boomf. The service takes your chosen Instagram images and prints them out on edible marshmallows. Imagine the possibilities. You could go meta and eat marshmallows printed with pictures of marshmallows. You could snack on adorable photos of your cats. You could roast your buddies over a campfire.

Each package consists of nine marshmallows with your choice of images and costs about $20 with free shipping in the UK. Boomf recommends avoiding images with large dark areas because the details get washed out.… Read more

Tongue electrode lets you taste flavor that isn't there

What if you could play, say, the game Cooking Mama and virtually taste the dishes you make? Or watch "Iron Chef" (still the best cooking competition ever on TV) and taste the dishes alongside the judges?

Nimesha Ranasinghe and his team at the National University of Singapore have built what they call the Digital Taste Simulator, an electrode that sits on the tip of the user's tongue and re-creates flavors.

It works by sending tiny alternating currents and slight temperature changes into the tongue that fool it into "tasting" four flavors: sweet, salty, bitter, and sour. "We have found noninvasive electrical and thermal stimulation of the tip of the tongue successfully generates the primary taste sensations," Ranasinghe said. … Read more

American Express is Switzerland in mobile payment war

American Express, unlike seemingly everyone else with a stake in the financial world, isn't interested in creating its own digital wallet for mobile payments.

Instead, it is dipping its foot into different facets of the mobile payment world, going for a more neutral stance.

"We want our card members to use their cards in whatever form or technology they choose," said David Yoo, senior vice president of mobile products and services for American Express.

Rather than get involved in the brewing mobile payment wars, which includes rivals such as Visa and MasterCard, but also Google, the wireless … Read more

Make your Android tablet a socially connected photo frame

There's an incredibly handy application in the Google Play store that lets you turn your Android smartphone or tablet into a socially connected digital picture frame. Called Dayframe (free), it's similar to the Daydream mode that comes with Android 4.2 Jelly Bean and later, except that Dayframe is much more social, more photo-friendly, and allows for very specific user-defined settings.

As to what makes this a "social connected" digital picture frame experience comes from the app's integration with various social networks. Dayframe displays pictures from services such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, as well … Read more

Lytro camera software now supports 3D viewing

Around this time in 2012, Lytro, creator of the world's first consumer light field camera, updated the desktop software that's necessary for processing the camera's living pictures. That update included Perspective Shift, enabling Lytro users to slightly change the point of view of a living picture by clicking and dragging it in any direction.

Lytro Desktop 3.1 for Mac and Windows and Lytro Mobile 1.2 for iOS, take that a step further. With a little extra processing, any living pictures that have been processed for Perspective Shift can now be viewed in 3D.

By using … Read more

Pentax pops out a pair of lenses

Whether you shoot with a big dSLR or diminutive Q, Pentaxians looking for a little more flexibility in their lens choices should welcome the latest addition to the company's lens lineup, a nice-sounding Limited series zoom -- the first zoom and weather-resistant Limited lens Pentax has offered -- and a not-toy, wide-ish but slow zoom for the Q mount.

The HD Pentax DA 20-40mm f/2.8-4 ED Limited DC WR specs out pretty well, and seems like an attractive match for the K-3. Its effective focal length of 30.5-61.5 on an APS-C camera offers a good … Read more

Adobe reads the crystal ball for 2013 online shopping season

What happens when you crunch billions of bytes of data? You can come up with some pretty good predictions.

Adobe Digital Index unveiled its crystal ball prophecies for this year's online shopping season, and it looks like it's going to be a doozy. Not only does Adobe Systems predict this year will see the highest-ever online spending during the US holiday season, but Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday will break records.

"Thanksgiving is the fastest-growing shopping day, and that's the biggest news this year. Cyber Monday will have the highest online sales in history," … Read more