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PhoenixIt’s the weekend and I have just one word for you: Winning!

Now let’s see what you’ve won:

Tie-In: I missed this: Apparently Scott Rosenberg’s Cowboys & Aliens has been reissued by It Books, a division of HarperCollins.

Plainclothes: If you’re a fan of Dick Tracy or Joe Staton, you might already know that there’s going to be a change in your newspaper on March 14. Mike Curtis and Staton will be the new team on Dick Tracy, and here’s a little profile of them, courtesy of their syndicate.

Atlas: If you remember the old Atlas/Seaboard comics of the 1970s or just love a good comic book retrospective, mark your digital calendar for March 11. Geppi’s Entertainment Museum is hosting “Atlas At Last,” which also ties in with the relaunch of the company’s characters from Ardden. Check it out!

Wulf: And speaking of the Atlas relaunch, here’s a review of one of the titles I’ve been waiting for: Wulf The Barbarian, written by Steve Niles.


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Android fragmentationGoogle on Thursday expanded its Fragments API to applications running older versions of Android, meaning apps that are compatible with Android 1.6 or higher can tap into Fragments to create apps that work on larger-screened devices like tablets.

Though Android has been growing in popularity recently among handset and tablet makers, the main complaint about the OS has been its fragmented nature. At this point, about 57.6 percent of Android devices are running version 2.2, followed by 2.1 at 31.4 percent. About 6.3 percent are still on Android 1.6, according to the Android Developers site.

To address this, Google introduced the Android Fragments API in early February as part of Android 3.0 Honeycomb.

"Android 3.0 further helps applications adjust their interfaces with a new class called Fragment," Dianne Hackborn, a Google software engineer, wrote in a February 3 blog post. "A Fragment is a self-contained component with its own UI and lifecycle; it can be-reused in different parts of an application's user interface depending on the desired UI flow for a particular device or screen."

Click to continue reading Google releases tool to address Android fragmentation


samsung galaxy tab 8.9

Samsung may announce an 8.9-inch Galaxy Tab tablet at the CTIA Wireless trade show on March 22, according to a press conference invitation sent out by Samsung this morning.

The invite asks "What's your Tab life?" with the numbers "78910." The Android-powered Galaxy Tab already exists in 7-inch and 10.1-inch sizes. Last month, rumors said Samsung was prepping an 8.9-inch version, which would fit the "89" between the 7 and 10 on the invitation.

"Curious about the secret behind 78910? Come discover what the buzz is all about and join us on our journey as we experience a world of endless technological possibility. We'll unveil our latest mobile products and innovations and explore the exciting new consumer lifestyles they make possible," the invite reads.

Click to continue reading Samsung teasing 8.9-inch Galaxy Tab for CTIA?


Latest Gear Live Videos

Trenched Double Fine

The ever so awesome Double Fine has announced their new title Trenched, which is to be released for Xbox LIVE Arcade. The trailer features a game which can be described as a third-person shooter with a hint of tower defense. According to Double Fine, players will be afforded thousands of different options to customize their merchs, Gamestop reports. Oh, and co-op mode? You betcha. However, we still have no word on whether the game will offer a competitive head-to-head option. You can could visit the Trenched website to see the trailer, but it's currently down. Come on guys! Fix your servers!


iPad 2

Apple has a new iPad on the way, but you've probably gotten pretty chummy with your original model. For a first-generation product, the Apple iPad is a fine tablet that can do tons of different things and hasn't lost any of its functionality in the last few days. Sure, the newer iPad 2 is more compact, faster, and adds cameras, but besides that, there's not much more in the way of upgrades. So, should you make the move to the iPad 2?

Well, the new one has a camera, so you can use FaceTime, Photo Booth, and other fun iLife apps that focus on taking photos or videos. If your best friend or favorite relative has an iPhone, iPod touch, or a Mac, this would be the perfect way to get some video calls going without getting a new cell phone. And its faster CPU and graphics processor means it's better suited for the apps and games of the future. Still, there are several good reasons why you shouldn't ditch your old iPad just yet. Here are five of them:

It's as good a media player as the iPad 2
The iPad 2 doesn't increase the resolution or improve the brightness or colors of its display over the first iPad, so as a plain movie viewer, there's no compelling reason to replace your iPad. There are no movies you can watch or songs you can listen to on the iPad 2 that you can't on the original iPad.

Click to continue reading 5 reasons not to buy the iPad 2


Saab has announced the first Android-based, in-dash "infotainment" system for a car.

Called 'IQon,' the platform was demoed in a Saab Phoenix concept car at the 2011 Geneva motor show.

The Wi-Fi enabled, 8-inch touch screen lets drivers access thousands of Android apps. Apart from the usual productivity apps, like e-mail, navigation, entertainment, and music streaming, drivers can expect to see more auto-specific apps; for example, an app that controls your car's air-conditioner, one reviewer suggested. Furthermore the platform has built-in remote communication to and from Saab dealerships, which could be useful for carrying out diagnostics and uploading vehicle data.

Click to continue reading Saab reveals IQon, the first Android infotainment system


On Thursday night's show, O'Brien claimed that Apple and its team of engineering wizards was "getting a little cocky". Team Coco then proceeded to spoof the iPad's desktop, thinness, "a pair of cheap cameras," and how we Americans seem to take everything said with an accent and lend it more credence than it actually deserves.

O'Brien, whose humor is perhaps more warm-hearted than his late-night rivals, completely leaves Steve Jobs or a parody of Jobs out of the fake launch video, almost certainly because of Jobs' struggle with cancer. The omission allows the humor to fall where it should: on Apple's iconic status, and how the iPad 2 might be considered a bit more like an iPad 1.5.

Click to continue reading Conan O’Brien pokes fun at Apple’s iPad 2


Take a look at the future of mobile virtual reality with the String Labs Augmented Reality Showcase app for the iPhone. This amazing new application is a tech demo from String Labs, celebrating the launch of their brand new augmented reality platform. Download the free app from the iTunes app store, and head over to the String Labs website to print out the five available image targets.

Choose from Pharaoh's Fury, Clayful, Scrawl, Proto, and Sneaker. When you launch the app, you can focus your rear camera on the image targets, and play with the games and utilities that show up in virtual reality. There are fun games, creative artistic drawings, and random virtual three eyed pets to play with. Check out our video, where we walk you through each one of the five image targets, and give you a taste of the technology. Take a look at the future of mobile virtual reality, and imagine all the possibilities.

What do you like about these new applications? Can you dream up an innovative way to use augmented reality? Share your idea's with us in the comments below. 

Read More | String Labs

On Wednesday Google opened a forum where site owners could solicit feedback on the changes. In less than 24 hours it has received 131 complaints, mostly from mom and pop websites whose traffic and search ranks plummeted as a result of the algorithm change.

Last Friday, Google altered its search algorithm to demote "low-quality" sites in its search results. The change was widely dubbed a "farmer update" because it targeted content-farming websites that aggregate unoriginal content.

At the time Google warned that around 12 percent of its search results would change following the "farmer update" last week. Google has previously said that it changes its algorithm 500 times a year, but rarely makes an announcement.


Opera Mac App Store

Opera, the least popular of the full Web browsers, became the first non-native browser to be included in Apple's Mac App Store on Thursday. But as per Apple's tradition with rating browsers, it has been slapped with a 17+ rating.

To download Opera from the Mac App Store, users will be prompted to verify that he or she is at least 17 years old.

"I'm very concerned," Jan Standal, vice president of Desktop Products for Opera Software, joked in a statement. "Seventeen is very young, and I am not sure if, at that age, people are ready to use such an application. It's very fast, you know, and it has a lot of features. I think the download requirement should be at least 18."

When it comes to rating browsers, Apple treats the entire Internet as its content and thus always gives the highest rating to browsers, as apps in the App Store demonstrate.

Click to continue reading Mac App Store pins silly 17+ rating on Opera browser


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