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Gadgets

Smartwatch Battle: Pebble Steel vs. Galaxy Gear 2

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Android
Gadgets

Before Google comes in with its own smartwatches, consumers have two mainstream devices to choose from. On one hand, there is the Galaxy Gear 2, coming from a reputed brand like Samsung and there's Pebble Steel by Pebble Technology Corporation that gained popularity after a successful Kickstarter funding campaign for their first watch.

When we consider the turf of wearable devices, there's nothing much to boast of, except, of course, Google Glass. Apart from Pebble and Gear, the tech industry is impatiently waiting for the Motorola smartwatch, which will be made in collaboration with Google. The wait, however, doesn't have to be this hard. If you are someone who wants to get their hands on a smartwatch right now, both the Pebble and the Gear 2 are excellent choices. Both have their own merits, and also their own demerits. But then, which to choose between the two? Well, that's why we are here. In this article, we'll be doing a quick comparison between the Pebble Steel smartwatch and the Galaxy Gear 2. Let's see who wins.

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Rugged, shape-shifting handheld runs Android

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Android
Gadgets

Motorola Solutions unveiled a rugged, enterprise handheld that runs Android 4.1, 1D or 2D scanning, and offers a choice of brick, gun, or turret styles.

When Motorola split into Motorola Mobility and Motorola Solutions back in 2011, Motorola Mobility was supposed to be the Android company and Motorola Solutions the Windows company. Yet, the latter, which produces a range of enterprise solutions including 4G wireless equipment, has done quite well with its Android-ready enterprise handhelds.

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This is the Gear Live, Samsung's $199 Android Wear Smartwatch

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Android
Gadgets

Wearables were everywhere today at Google I/O, but there was only one truly new product announced: the Galaxy Live, Samsung's Android Wear-running smartwatch. And we've had a chance to spend a few minutes playing with a demo unit — it's only able to do a few things right now, but we have our best sense yet of what Android Wear hardware and software will look like. This is one of the key devices for Android Wear, one of the watches being given to all attendees of the conference, and at first glance it's quite nice.

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Nest Labs buys Dropcam, gains Linux-based cams

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Linux
Gadgets

Nest Labs is buying Dropcam for $555 million, and will integrate Dropcam’s Linux-based surveillance cameras into its own Linux-based home automation system.

Nest’s deal to acquire Dropcam for $555 million was revealed by Recode and confirmed in a Nest blog post by co-founder Matt Rogers. The acquisition follows Nest’s own acquisition by Google for $3.2 billion, announced back in January.

The home surveillance company’s Linux-based cameras will be integrated within Nest’s own Linux-based product line, including a smart thermostat and smoke detector (see farther below). The Dropcam team will move from San Francisco to Nest’s offices in Palo Alto.

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Samsung to unveil its Android Wear Smart watch at Google I/O next week

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Android
Linux
Gadgets

Samsung has released a Tizen smart watch in the form of the Samsung Gear 2, but now, according to sources in CNET, the korean hardware manufacturer is due to launch their own Android wear offering next week at Google’s developer conference, Google I/O.

So why release Tizen and Android? Being a Tizen site we would prefer dearest Samsung to only release Tizen from now till the end of time, but the fact is that Android and Android ware is an immediate revenue stream that Samsung does not want to miss out on.

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Stroke and gestures now on Raspberry Pi touch screen

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Development
Linux
Gadgets

The PiTFT is one of our favourite little things for the Raspberry Pi, making it much more portable than it naturally is and opening it up to many more cool projects than you could do before. The one thing it did lack was proper, modern touch screen controls such as swiping and gesture but this has now been added thanks to Xstroke.

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Wireless personal drone detector runs Linux

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Linux
Gadgets

APlus Mobile is seeking Kickstarter funding for a Linux-based “Personal Drone Detection System” that detects nearby drones using mesh grid triangulation.

It sounds at first like an April Fool’s joke delayed in development, but it appears to be legit: APlus Mobile and its R&D spinoff Domestic Drone Countermeasures (DDC) have launched a Kickstarter project for a device that will detect when a drone aircraft approaches within 50 feet. The Personal Drone Detection System is available in $499 (alpha testing) and $699 (beta testing) funding packages, shipping in November 2014 and April 2015, respectively.

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Goofy-looking security guard bot runs Linux

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Linux
Gadgets

GS4 unveiled an autonomous, Linux-based robot security guard called Bob, based on a MetraLabs “Scitos A5″ robot programmed by the University of Birmingham.

U.K.-based security firm GS4 Technology has launched a three week trial at its Gloucestershire headquarters of a robot called Bob that was designed by the University of Birmingham School of Computer Science. GS4 will evaluate Bob’s performance as a trainee security officer. Bob is part of a £7.2 million ($12.2 million) project called STRANDS, hosted by the University of Birmingham, with an aim of expanding the role of robots in the workplace.

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Google Fit: Google’s new health service to challenge Apple’s HealthKit

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Android
Google
Gadgets

However, there is a need for more clarity on whether Google Fit will be integrated into the next version of Android, or offered as a standalone app that could be downloaded independently.

It added: “One source with knowledge of Google’s plans said Google Fit would allow a wearable device that measures data like steps or heart rate to interface with Google’s cloud-based services, and become part of the Google Fit ecosystem.”

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What To Expect From The First Ubuntu Smart Devices?

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Ubuntu
Gadgets

After testing the developer’s build of Ubuntu Touch smartphone OS in 2013, the company behind Ubuntu Linux (Canonical) has finally confirmed that it will soon release its first batch of entry-level smartphones running the open-source operating system later this year. The company has teamed up with Meizu and Bq to be its initial Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs). As compared to the open source Firefox OS released last year in consortium with Alacatel, the mobile edition of Ubuntu is not an HTML 5 or browser-based ecosystem. Similar to Android, it loads native Ubuntu applications (messaging, phone, and camera) flawlessly, even with the absence of wireless connectivity.

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Edubuntu Vs UberStudent: Return To College With The Best Linux Distro

Importantly, there are a handful of programs that are on Edubuntu that UberStudent doesn’t have, such as KAlgebra, Kazium, KGeography, and Marble. Instead, UberStudent has a smaller collection of applications but it does include some useful items when it comes to writing papers that Edubuntu does not have. So ultimately, Edubuntu includes more programs that are information-heavy, while UberStudent includes more tools that can aid students in their studies but doesn’t directly give them any sort of information. Read more

Zotac Nvidia Jetson TK1 review

The Jetson TK1, Nvidia’s first development board to be marketed at the general public, has taken a circuitous route to our shores. Unveiled at the company’s Graphics Technology Conference earlier this year, the board launched in the US at a headline-grabbing price of $192 but its international release was hampered by export regulations. Zotac, already an Nvidia partner for its graphics hardware, volunteered to sort things out and has partnered with Maplin to bring the board to the UK. In doing so, however, the price has become a little muddled. $192 – a clever dollar per GPU core – has become £199.99. Compared to Maplin’s other single-board computer, the sub-£30 Raspberry Pi, it’s a high-end item that could find itself priced out of the reach of the company’s usual customers. Read more

New Human Interface Guidelines for GNOME and GTK+

I’ve recently been hard at work on a new and updated version of the GNOME Human Interface Guidelines, and am pleased to announce that this will be ready for the upcoming 3.14 release. Over recent years, application design has evolved a huge amount. The web and native applications have become increasingly similar, and new design patterns have become the norm. During that period, those of us in the GNOME Design Team have worked with developers to expand the range of GTK+’s capabilities, and the result is a much more modern toolkit. Read more