Posts Tagged ‘windows’

Transferring Video to a PC

August 14, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Q: I’m in the midst of creating a photo slide show and would like to include video, but am not sure if/how I can properly transfer video to the PC from my video camera, which records on tape, for which I think I need to use a FireWire connection. The desktop all-in-one PC has no FireWire input, only USB ports. Is this still workable? A: USB and FireWire (also called 1394 or I.Link) are incompatible data-transfer standards. Over the years, there have been some adapters and converters advertised, but I’m not aware of a widely used one and have never tested any. I’d check the camera carefully to see if it has any other transfer mechanism built in, like a memory card or USB or Wi-Fi. If not, you can search the Web for adapters. But the best solution might be to see if you can borrow somebody’s older Mac, most of which came with FireWire for years. You could then transfer the video to the Mac, copy it to a Windows-formatted USB flash drive or external hard disk (which the Mac can use) or to a cloud-storage account like Dropbox. Then, from one of these, transfer it to your PC. Q: What is your recommendation for a good and inexpensive laptop for use by a 9- and 12-year-old. The computer will mainly be used for writing school reports and Internet access. A: I’m unsure what your definition of “inexpensive” is, but you should be able to find a name-brand Windows laptop in the $400-to-$500 range that would handle those needs. It should do the trick for three to five years

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The Many Internet-Video Options for TVs

August 14, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

[ See post to watch video ] Watching TV shows, movies and other video via the Internet on your big-screen television has become all the rage. But the proliferation of devices and methods for doing so has made the whole thing mighty confusing. Should you buy a “smart TV” to watch, say, Netflix? Or should you make an older TV “smart” by attaching a box that includes Netflix? Or should you buy an adapter and just beam Netflix wirelessly from your smartphone or tablet? And then, should you stream a movie or download it? Do you have to pay to get TV shows and movies from the Internet, or can you get them for free? There’s no one right answer for everyone, or every situation. To help sort out the choices, here’s a primer for watching Internet video on a TV, legally. This isn’t a review of any one product and it’s aimed at average, non-techie consumers. Techies reading this won’t find some of the more obscure products and methods. I’ve also chosen to omit the oldest, but most complex, method — hooking up a PC to a TV using cables. That’s so 2008. Streaming vs. Beaming vs. Downloading First, let’s sort out some confusing terms. Downloading, the method used by Apple’s iTunes, usually means you are buying or renting a show or movie individually and typically storing it on your device. Streaming, used by services like YouTube or Netflix, generally means you aren’t buying a program or film, but are watching it as it flows from the company’s servers. Beaming simply means you’re streaming the video from a smartphone, tablet or PC to the TV, usually via an adapter device plugged into the TV. But when watching Internet video on a TV, it isn’t that simple

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Nokia Lumia 1020 Nudges Smartphone Cameras to the Next Level

August 12, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Smartphone cameras have improved a great deal since the birth of the smartphone, but photos captured in certain settings — people in dark bars or wedding reception halls, your kid across the soccer field, that deer out in the backyard — are still pretty mediocre. Nokia, the Finnish handset maker that in recent years has struggled to compete in the smartphone market, wants to change that. Yup, I’m talking about the Nokia Lumia 1020, the company’s new, “notice-me” smartphone with a 41-megapixel camera. The camera is comparable to what you’d get with a simple point-and-shoot. [ See post to watch video ] Some of the technology in the Lumia 1020 actually borrowed from an earlier smartphone, the Nokia PureView 808. With the Lumia 1020, which runs the Windows Phone 8 mobile operating system, Nokia threw in two high-end features that are meant to make images look much better: A special backside-illuminated sensor, which helps in low-light situations, and optical image stabilization, which helps prevent blurry photos. There are also manual controls in the camera, for people who fancy themselves shutterbugs. I’ve been testing the Nokia Lumia 1020 smartphone for the past week, and I was impressed by its camera. It took crisp, clear photos in low-light environments (“Oooh, can you send me that picture?” friends would say in social settings). Colors looked rich and saturated, although, sometimes a bit yellowish

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The NFL’s Favorite iPad Appmaker, PlayerLync Raises Funding

July 30, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

In just two years, one company has become the playbook distributor of choice for half the National Football League. Some 16 teams — including the Denver Broncos, Green Bay Packers and Chicago Bears – use its iPad app to share and annotate digital playbooks and game film. NFL teams pay $20,000 to $50,000 per year for the service. PlayerLync , the unlikely little startup with the flashy customers, hails from Englewood, Colo. and was founded by former telecom execs. It’s just raised “a large Series A round” from the Denver-based Anschutz Investment Co lead by Phil Anschutz, the billionaire who cofounded Major League Soccer and owns stakes in teams like the Los Angeles Lakers and the Los Angeles Kings. PlayerLync co-founder and CEO Bob Paulsen posited in an interview today that his company’s advantage has been focusing on the backend of its collaboration platform, where other competitors — an example is Hudl — have poured their effort into design. (Don’t look now, but I think he just bragged about this product being ugly.) PlayerLync’s tools include automatic content synchronization — so teams can load up everyone’s apps with new tape before they get on the plane after the game — as well as annotation via screen recording, voice and text. There are also extensive security measures. In most cases, the teams are replacing burned DVDs and printed scouting reports. In addition to breaking into other sports, PlayerLync is now starting to sell into retail, media and transportation fields. It’s also expanded from iPad to Windows 8 tablets, and plans to add Android soon.

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Amid Corporate Reorganization, Symantec Names Five New Execs

July 24, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Last month security software company Symantec confirmed a significant round of layoffs , amounting to about eight percent of its total headcount. Today it starting adding back to that headcount with the naming of five new senior executives including a chief marketing officer, a chief communications officer, a chief security officer and two senior VPs. Announced in a corporate blog post earlier today, the five new execs are being brought on to execute a company-wide shift in direction instituted by Steve Bennett, Symantec’s new CEO, who joined the company a year ago. The new hires are: CMO Manny Kostas , a former SVP of marketing and strategy at Hewlett-Packard who left after a shakeup last year . He’s been working for Polycom since October; CCO Colleen Lacter , a veteran of PR agency Waggener Edstrom better known as Microsoft’s PR agency. She was involved in many significant product launches including Windows 95, Internet Explorer, MSN and Bing; CSO Julie Talbot-Hubbard , previously chief information security officer at Ohio State University.

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Transferring Information to a New BlackBerry

July 24, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Q: Has anyone found a way to transfer saved emails, saved calendar entries and saved memos from older BlackBerrys, like the Bold, to the new Q10? I am told by Verizon sales staff that only contacts can be transferred. A: The new Q10 and Z10 are based on an entirely different operating system and are a break with the past, so transfers are limited. According to a BlackBerry spokesman, a program called BlackBerry Link will transfer over memos and calendar entries saved to your old device, or your computer, but not locally saved emails. However, he said, emails stored in a cloud account can reappear when you link the new phone to that same cloud account. Q: You recently reviewed new Intel chips that greatly increased battery life in two laptops. Are these same chips likely to be showing up in tablets and smartphones? A: Most tablets and smartphones don’t use laptop-grade Intel chips, but instead rely on chip designs from a competitor, ARM, which specializes in mobile devices. Various manufacturers produce ARM-based processors. The only tablets I know of that use Intel-laptop chips are Windows 8 tablets that are essentially hybrid laptops, like Microsoft’s Surface Pro. Email Walt at mossberg@wsj.com .

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How to Control a PC in Thin Air

July 23, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

[ See post to watch video ] Without hand gestures we’d never be able to wave to friends, fist bump after our team scores or let the driver of the car in front of us know what we think of him. Gestures can be quite useful in many aspects of daily life, but how useful are they in front of a PC? This week, I tested a new way to get your hands moving at a Windows PC or Mac by using the Leap Motion Controller. It plugs into a computer’s USB port and rests by a keyboard—wherever you can comfortably gesture. It works by detecting your fingers as they move above it, tracking up to 1/100th of a millimeter of movement.

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Nokia’s Big-Screen But Otherwise Low-End Lumia 625 to Arrive in Q3 for Around $290

July 23, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

As expected , Nokia on Tuesday announced details on the Lumia 625 –a Windows Phone that packs a 4.7-inch screen along with otherwise modest specs. The phone is expected to ship to various non-U.S. countries in the third quarter and sell for 220 euros ($289).

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Microsoft’s Making More Money From Phones, but a Lot of That Is From Android Patent Payments

July 18, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

As part of its disappointing earnings report on Thursday, Microsoft noted that it is making more money from mobile phones. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean Windows Phone is raking in the bucks. The company chose to lump together its phone software revenue with the patent royalties it gets from makers of Android devices. “Windows Phone revenue, reflecting patent licensing revenue and sales of Windows Phone licenses, increased $222 million for the quarter,” Microsoft said in commentary accompanying its earnings statement . Indeed, it seems likely that Microsoft’s gains are coming largely on the back of Android, as the company has now signed per-unit royalty licenses with much of the industry, save for Motorola and Google itself. Nokia, meanwhile, said it had its best-ever quarter for Windows Phones. But with total Lumia sales of 7.4 million units (along with a smaller number of phones sold by HTC, Samsung and others), the bulk of Microsoft’s phone revenue appears to still be coming from Android. Microsoft declined to comment further on, or provide any additional breakdown on the figures to AllThingsD .

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Nokia Smartphone Chief Jo Harlow on Why Carrier Exclusives Still Make Sense

July 12, 2013  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

While the same iPhone, Samsung Galaxy S and HTC One models are typically made available across a wide range of carriers, Nokia has been taking a different approach in the U.S. market. Since reentering the U.S. market with its first Windows Phone models a couple of years ago, the company has chosen to give exclusivity for each model to one of the major carriers. With Nokia’s new 41-megapixel Lumia 1020 cameraphone, for example, AT&T will have the exclusive. Verizon, meanwhile has the Lumia 928, while T-Mobile is stocking the new Lumia 925, along with the low-end Lumia 521. Though not without its downsides, smartphone business head Jo Harlow said doing so gives carriers more reason to promote the Windows Phones than it might if the same phone were available at a rival. “Giving something exclusive or unique has been more of an incentive to support the devices in market,” Harlow told AllThingsD in an interview after Thursday’s launch of the Lumia 1020. Getting support from carriers — from subsidies, to advertising, to interest from in-store sales representatives — is critical in the U.S

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