Despite the relentless coverage we give to the hardware end of the tech world, BetaNews is a software site at its heart, and we are always trying out new software.
Granted, in the last few years this has come to mean something different than it used to.
Most of the new software we are exposed to on a daily basis comes in the form of mobile applications, or as software-as-a-service or Web apps. This is because these are areas that haven’t reached full maturity like desktop software has…and frankly, because it’s still open season for developers to become quick millionaires on relatively straightforward concepts.
We’ve heard of near field communication or NFC technology being used to make mobile payments (go check out Google Wallet if you haven’t already), but a student from the University of Sydney has integrated this kind of simple, transactional technology into tables at restaurants so that customers can quickly and easily order food.
If you’re making or drinking your morning coffee in a hurry you’ll find that it’s often too hot when you first try to sip it. Ignore it for a few minutes and unfortunately it’ll then be lukewarm and disappointing. There rarely seems to be a happy medium!
Well, the cute little Joulies, dreamt up by Dave Petrillo and Dave Jackson, were designed to stop this regular occurance from ever happening again.
We love the look of The Oona cell phone accessory, which at first glance just seems like any other smart phone stand. However, it’s super customisable, simply play around with the little screw and sliding mechanism and turn it into a countless number of positions and uses, hang it from a cupboard, turn it into a camera stand, clip it to the back of a chair on a train, the list really could go on and on.
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While Google, Vimeo, and others continue to experiment with H.264 as the codec of choice for HTML5 Web browser-embedded video, there’s still considerable debate over whether W3C — the caretakers of HTML and other Web standards — should allow Web proprietors to embrace standards that are not essentially free. MPEG LA, the rights holder for H.264 technology and its licensing agent for the Internet Broadcast AVC Video portfolio, recently said it will not charge royalties for the use of H.264 encoding in video that’s delivered free — specifically, for any video for which the creators or servers are not compensated — at least until the end of 2015 (a date corrected from the end of 2016, which the licensing agency originally announced).