Plastic Logic hopes there is a Que for e-books

Plastic Logic has given a name--but not a launch date--for its forthcoming e-reader.

The e-book reader, which can display electronic books as well as PDFs, PowerPoint, and other business documents, will be dubbed the Que, the company is announcing this week. Plastic Logic said it will show off the Que at the Consumer Electronics Show in January, at which time it will announce pricing, availability, and other details.

The product was originally slated for launch this year, but the company said in March that it would not arrive until early next year.

As previously detailed, the Que will have both … Read more

Apple releases iTunes 9.0.1, and updates to Main Stage and Logic Suites

Apple has released a few updates to their audio programs, including iTunes, Main Stage, and their Logic Express and Logic Pro suites. These updates are available via Software Update or the links provided here, and address the following bugs and issues with previous versions:… Read more

Want to analyze big data? Check your log files

More than a few technology sectors seem to be turning up the volume on "big data" and the enormous challenges and opportunities that enterprises face in managing and analyzing their data and system resources.

There are a number of hip technologies and frameworks like Apache Hadoop, which is used to store, process, and analyze massive data sets, enabling applications to work with thousands of nodes and petabytes of data.

One area that provides never-ending data analysis fodder are log files. For those not aware, log files are usually automatically created and updated whenever a machine or machine user … Read more

Domino puzzle

Domino Solitaire is a challenging and fun way to use dominoes. While this game initially confuses, it quickly becomes an addictive puzzle.

We found the program's interface to be very weak, since it lacks any onscreen direction and the stark black-and-white cluster of dominoes is confusing. Fortunately, after scrolling through the Help file (which is focused on explaining scoring more than on how to actually play) we got the hang of the program. We used our mouse to match up two touching domino numbers, which corresponded to a key of various domino combinations to the left of the screen. … Read more

Midi-based music instruction

MidiLogic allows beginning guitar and bass players to practice their notes and chords. Although the program's interface isn't the most intuitive we've ever seen, the program has the potential to be tremendously helpful to budding musicians.

The program's interface is obvious in some ways, but puzzling in others. The program displays either a bass or guitar neck across the top of the screen; this can be rotated or adjusted for left-handed players, which is nice. As a midi file of the selected song plays, red squares appear on the instrument to show users how to fret, … Read more

Report: Cloud services can't handle the pressure

According to a new report by researchers in Australia, stress tests have revealed that the "infrastructure-on-demand services offered by Amazon, Google and Microsoft suffer from regular performance and availability issues."

The seven-month study of Amazon's EC2, Google's App Engine, and Microsoft's Azure cloud computing services simulated 2,000 concurrent users connecting to services from each of the three providers, with researchers measuring response times and other performance indicators.

The results were at best mixed, and at worst, severely dysfunctional. For example, I'd never heard that when using Google App Engine, none of your data-processing tasks can last longer than 30 seconds, lest the service throw an exception back at you.

Researchers found that the three platforms "delivered wildly variable performance results as Amazon, Google and Microsoft trialled, added and dropped new features." … Read more

Kindle rival Plastic Logic partners with Olive Software

So far, Amazon's Kindle has been in a safe position as one of the dominant electronic readers on the market. However, this may be changing because its rival, the Plastic Logic e-Reader, has been busy gaining prelaunch partners.

Plastic Logic, the start-up maker of the possible Kindle "killer" e-reader, announced Thursday that Olive Software will be a key service provider and partner for the Plastic Logic Publishers Program. The partnership means the two companies will develop content-publishing solutions for newspapers, magazines, and Web content providers, as well as other publishers that distribute their content via Plastic Logic'… Read more

McAfee acquiring MX Logic, delivers solid outlook

This was originally published at ZDNet's Between the Lines.

McAfee on Thursday announced it's acquiring MX Logic, which provides on-demand e-mail, continuity, and Web services, for $140 million in cash.

The move is designed to bolster McAfee's security as a service lineup. Security software vendors have been racing to the cloud. MX Logic has 40,000 customers who cover more than 4 million end users. McAfee said that it plans to cross-sell MX Logic with its Web services such as the Total Protection Service (statement).

Separately, McAfee topped second quarter estimates and delivered a better-than-expected third quarter … Read more

How SpringSource is taking on Java Goliaths

Some argue that open-source software can't innovate. In fact, one of the industry's former executives, Peter Yared, recently argued that "the only successful open-source companies sell commodities."

Yared clearly hasn't heard of SpringSource, an open-source application platform provider that is redefining the J2EE application server and, quite possibly, the future of open source.

Yared isn't alone in his beliefs. A friend recently wrote me to suggest that open source is at its best when disrupting big, profitable markets:

Commercial open source is a (commodity) replacement market. When it is not (i.e., people are … Read more

Onkyo flexes some muscle with its new HTIBs

Onkyo's home-theater-in-a-box (HTIB) systems tend to be everything HTIBs usually aren't: big, boxy, and they actually sound pretty good. Today the company rolled out two new 7.1 HTIBs, HT-S7200 and HT-S6200, which are step-ups to the existing HT-S5200 and HT-S3200 (full review).

Onkyo's new HTIBs have several upgrades, but the first thing we noticed is that the systems aren't stuck with the same "pass-through-only" HDMI inputs that plagued the step-down HT-S3200 and HT-S5200. Both the HT-S7200 and HT-S6200 can accept audio over HDMI (you don't need to run separate cables like on … Read more