Around the IT Industry 7/23-7/27

by Modis on July 27, 2012

Windows 8’s New Metro UI Getting Pumped with DirectX 11.1

Microsoft’s DirectX rendering software has been a mainstay of computer graphics since its inception in 1995, but each new iteration of the popular engine adds new capabilities to application developers’ toolkits and the latest version of Windows is poised to maximize the potential of the new DirectX 11.1 with its Metro UI. The new DirectX allows Windows 8 to process and display graphics up to 500% faster than Windows 7 in addition to providing a plethora of memory usage reductions and streamlining complex graphical interfaces for gaming.

Is Microsoft Sharing Skype Conversations with the FBI?

Microsoft recently filed a patent on a technology which allows them to “legally intercept” communications conducted via its Skype VoIP messaging platform. The software corporation has been unwilling to confirm or deny allegations that the technology has already been implemented and is already funneling information to federal authorities, particularly since Skype instant-messaging logs are one of the many pieces of evidence being used by the FBI in the controversial case against Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom.

Real-time Subtitles For Foreign Languages

The language barrier may soon come crashing down as technology has begun to make serious headway in the realm of real-time translation. Will Powell, a computer programmer, constructed a custom program that combines the capabilities of Google’s Glass heads-up display, a Raspberry Pi microcomputer, and some Bluetooth recording devices to produce an extraordinary display of technical ingenuity that allows two people speaking different languages to understand each other in real time.

What’s New for USB 3.0?

The new USB standard, USB 3.0, is on its way and it provides several considerable advantages over its 2.0 predecessor. First of all, the data transfer rate of the new standard is 5 GB per second, more than 100 times faster than the older format’s 35 MB per second cap. Additionally, the new format could allow power-hungry devices such as laptops to be charged exclusively through a USB 3.0 connection as the power transfer rate is sufficient to feed the batteries within such machines. This could mean a new standard for device chargers, allowing a single USB 3.0 power adapter to be used for a variety of devices from cell phones to e-readers to laptops.

ISPs May Soon Institute Data Caps on Landline Users Too

Data capping has been a common issue in the world of mobile data usage for several years now, much to the chagrin of high-usage customers who find their data streams reduced to a crawl by month’s end. Now, however, several major American ISPs are beginning to roll out data caps on their landline Internet services as well. These companies, including AT&T, Comcast, and Time Warner Cable, are rolling out these changes in an effort to stem the rising bandwidth usage brought on by such services as Netflix which accounted for one-third of all downstream Internet traffic in the U.S. last year.

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