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Gadgets

Hackable media-streaming speaker does HiFi with tubes

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Gadgets

The 18.5 x 9.4 x 8.5-inch device runs Linux on a Raspberry Pi SBC, or for $110 more, on a quad-core, Freescale i.MX6 based Udoo Quad, which also runs Android. Each SBC furnishes Bluetooth and WiFi streaming, as well as I/O made available at the rear of the system.

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Wireless router garment runs on Linux threads

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Gadgets

The “BB.Suit,” a wearable wireless router garment prototype created by Dutch design house By Borre, runs OpenWRT Linux on a TP-Link router board.

Last month at South-by-Southwest (SXSW) in Austin, Texas, Dutch fashion designer Borre Akkersdijk unveiled his wearable computer called the BB.Suit. While most wearables are eye- or wrist-wear, the BB.Suit is an actual onesie garment with electronic circuitry woven in, including Bluetooth, GPS, NFC, and a WiFi access point.

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How LG Took WebOS from Mobile Phones to TVs in Under a Year

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Linux
Gadgets

When LG acquired the WebOS project from HP early last year, it was a stripped down Linux-based mobile operating system hardly fit to run on any hardware. Then in January, less than a year later, LG debuted its new WebOS smart TVs at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. And until the first WebOS TVs hit retail shelves earlier this month the team was working around the clock for the release.

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Zicom introduces first-of-its-kind Hybrid Mini DVR

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Linux
Gadgets

Besides supporting standard algorithms for video and audio encoding and decoding, a Linux operating system is embedded.

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Music streaming hotspot launches on Kickstarter for $30

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Linux
Gadgets

Fon has launched a Kickstarter project for a Linux-based “Gramofon” device that streams music from multiple mobile devices, and also acts as a WiFi hotspot.

With 26 days to go, Gramofon has yet to reach the halfway mark in funding toward its ambitious $250,000 Kickstarter goal. Fon plans to ship its first 6,500 units in July no matter what, but if the project is funded, it will expand its distribution, with later delivery dates. The Gramofon is now available for $30 (black) or $40 (white), with prices eventually rising to $50 and $60, respectively.

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Ubuntu 14.04 will power “first commercially available Ubuntu tablets”

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Ubuntu
Gadgets

Canonical eventually wants to create a single operating system that can be installed across desktops, phones, and tablets, with a different interface presented on each device. That convergence hasn't been completed yet, so with 14.04 (codenamed "Trusty Tahr") there will be separate downloads for the mobile editions. "Full convergence means that the same code for operating systems and applications will be running on all types of devices, from phones to tablets to desktops, and even both smaller and larger devices," Ubuntu Engineering VP Rick Spencer told Ars in an e-mail. "Convergence is still a work in progress, and we will continue to move the code to the desktop as it is ready in each release."

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Is Amazon's Fire TV a dud for gamers?

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Android
Gadgets

I suspect we're in the very early days of gaming on the Fire TV. Amazon has gotten the Fire TV to market ahead of an Apple TV or Android TV that offers games, and we'll most likely see the game controller and the overall gaming experience get even better in future releases of the Fire TV.

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This is Amazon’s smartphone

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Android
Gadgets

According to details from multiple sources, Amazon’s first phone will be powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, and it will also include 2GB of RAM. It will run a heavily customized version of Google’s Android operating system similar to the version that powers Amazon’s tablets.

Our sources state that the phone’s display will measure 4.7 inches diagonally, making the handset’s screen a bit smaller than recent flagship offerings from Samsung and HTC. The handset also have comparatively low pixel density, featuring 720p HD resolution compared to 1080p HD resolution on many rival devices.

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Samsung's Android Wear watch and Google-less phone coming this year

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Android
Gadgets

Samsung's first attempt at putting together an advanced smartwatch based on Android, the Galaxy Gear, met with a very rough reception at the tail end of last year, and the company quickly switched to its own Tizen software for the Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo. In emailed comments to The Verge, Samsung has confirmed Yoon's timeline of a 2014 release for its new smartwatch and clarified that it will indeed be using Android Wear. Together with the Gear Fit, which runs its own custom software, Samsung will soon be supporting three different operating systems for its wearable devices.

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Linksys launches new router with open source code

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OSS
Gadgets

Linksys has started shipping a new router, and it’s touting its latest offering as the first consumer-grade Wi-Fi router to provide thorough wireless coverage throughout the home through its four external antennas.

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More in Tux Machines

In wake of Anonabox, more crowdsourced Tor router projects make their pitch

Last week, Ars reported on the story of Anonabox, an effort by a California developer to create an affordable privacy-protecting device based on the open source OpenWRT wireless router software and the Tor Project’s eponymous Internet traffic encryption and anonymization software. Anonabox was pulled from Kickstarter after accusations that the project misrepresented its product and failed to meet some basic security concerns—though its developers still plan to release their project for sale through their own website. But Anonabox’s brief campaign on Kickstarter has demonstrated demand for a simple, inexpensive way to hide Internet traffic from prying eyes. And there are a number of other projects attempting to do what Anonabox promised. On Kickstarter competitor Indiegogo there’s a project called Invizbox that looks almost identical to Anonabox—except for the approach its team is taking to building and marketing the device. Read more

Debian Now Defaults To Xfce On Non-x86 Desktops

Back in September Debian switched back to the GNOME desktop by default in place of Xfce for the upcoming Debian 8.0 "Jessie" release. However, as of today, the non-x86 versions of Debian have flip-flopped once again back to Xfce. Debian switched back to GNOME in September over reasons dealing with accessibility, systemd integration, and other factors when seeing what was the best fit to be the default for Debian 8 Jessie. However, now for platforms aside from x86 and x86_64, Xfce has returned to the default over poor experiences in using the GNOME Shell. Read more

Phoenix Is Trying To Be An Open Version Of Apple's Swift

Apple unveiled the Swift programming language at this year's WWDC event but sadly it's still not clear whether Apple will "open up" the language to let it appear on non-Apple platforms. Swift is built atop LLVM and designed to be Apple's successor to Objective-C in many regards while suppoorting C/Obj-C/Obj-C++ all within a single program. With non-Apple folks being interested in the language, it didn't take long before an open-source project started up around it. Ind.ie has today announced their Phoenix project that aims to be a free and open version of Apple's Swift programming language. The work is being led by Greg Casamento who is also the leader of GNUStep, the common open-source implementation of Apple's Cocoa frameworks. Read more

Google Chromebook quietly takes aim at the enterprise

Google's Chromebook is a cheap alternative to a more expensive Windows or Mac PC or laptop, but up until recently it lacked any specific administrative oversight tools for enterprise IT. While IT might have liked the price tag, they may have worried about the lack of an integrated tool suite for managing a fleet of Chromebooks. That's changed with release of Chromebook for Work, a new program designed to give IT that control they crave for Chromebooks. Read more