Oct 14

What You Need To Know About Mobile Flexible Displays

For the past decades, there have been efforts from mobile developers to engineer display screens that resemble the properties of paper. As the battle for dominance on the tablet and smartphone market continues to intensify, researchers are working to make this vision into a reality, combining meta-foil substrates and polymer to a thin-film transistor (TFT) backplate. This union yields a thin and clear substrate with the barrier properties of glass. So, brace yourselves smartgadget fans! Flexible screens may become a reality sooner than you think.


What are flexible screens?

curved textIn theory, flexible screens can be fully bent. They rely mainly on the current display technologies, such as the AMOLED (active matrix light emitting diode) and the OLED (organic light emitting diode). Since OLED pixels create their own light source, they don’t need to tap into the LCD screen’s power. Instead, they depend on the circuitry of the pixels infused into the glass. Meanwhile, AMOLED screens employ organic compounds to create their own light source, once current passes through them. For flexibility, the layers of glass are replaced with sheets of bendable plastic film, allowing them to be flexed without breaking the internals.

lg bend

Apple joins the fad

Last year, the DailyFinance reported that Apple is finally joining the bandwagon by conducting high-level meetings with Universal Display. Ideally, the screen has a massive portfolio of 2,700 OLED-centric patents. However, this negotiation has left the new string of iPhones from making the cut. iPhone 6′s predecessor, the iPhone 5c, is only mounted with an in-plane switching (IPS) screen, which is designed to remedy low response time and low-quality color reproduction.

SEE ALSO: What Will Happen When Apple Finally Runs Out Of Ideas?

Samsung’s venture

samsung oled curved

Earlier last year, Samsung also announced their attempt to create flexible screens. The company joined the FAMOLED (Flexible Active Matrix Organic Light-Emitting Diode) bandwagon by launching YOUM – the first “bendable” OLED display screen line of Samsung. When the South Korean-based company released its Galaxy Round last year, it was considered by some as the “dawn of flexible display smartphones.” However, The Round only has a curved screen and not a paper thin, flexible display that Samsung used in its commercials. The company’s latest smartphone, the Samsung Galaxy Note 4, doesn’t have a flexible display. Rather, it has a “WQHD touchscreen” that features 4 times more pixels than the standard HD.

Corning’s attempt

bendable smartphones

With Corning’s Willow Glass, there is hope for a flexible protective glass for bendable displays. Despite its thinness, the film has enough strength and flexibility, enabling displays to be wrapped around the device. What’s worth noting is that the company is pursuing high-temperature processes, which is blurred from the picture until today. Ideally, the Willow Glass can be processed at a temperature of 500°C, which the company claims to be essential, since it can’t be processed and supported with polymer films.

“Flexible displays don’t mean flexible phones”


Gizmodo noted that the arrival of flexible displays doesn’t welcome the advent of bendable devices. There are still challenges to be conquered since the guts of tablets and smartphones are not meant to be folded, bent, or rolled up. Adding to the hurdles is the fact that batteries are not meant to be twisted. Earlier this year, CNET’s Jessica Dolcourt challenged the idea of Willow Glass, saying that it’s not sturdy to guard the internals. She also said that combined chemistry and industrial design don’t guarantee the handset’s ability to rebuff scratches and the long-term wear patterns, making it vulnerable to breakage.

While flexible screens are a wonderful theoretical technology, Forbes notes that they don’t entirely solve “real-world” problems that the mobile industry is currently facing. However, the good thing about phones with curved screens is that they are less likely to shatter when dropped.

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Oct 14

Apple’s New 5K Retina iMac Sure Looks Impressive, But Is It Worth It?



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Recently at Apple’s tablet event, we saw a conference that left us all a bit… underwhelmed. Everyone loves a good iPad or iPad Mini, but not when they don’t offer anything more than a new paint job and nice camera. That being the case, it would seem that Apple has a bit to make up for. So what could they really push for? Something a bit less expected. Their solution to the recent hardware disappointments is by giving us a new iMac. Not just any type of upgrade, however. The new Retina 5K iMac is what Apple is deciding to bless us all with. That 5K resolution rate just begs one real question; Is it worth it?

imac 5k


That’s A Lot Of Pixels…

mac 5k

When you think of Apple’s “Retina” line of products, you think of incredibly beautiful displays. The pixel count is always through the roof normally. The biggest feature that everyone is going to be looking at is the screen of the new iMac, itself. Naturally, as an iMac, it has a very nice screen, but the 5K pixel point is what really makes it stand out. This 27 inch screen shows off a full 14.4 MILLION pixels at one time. The pixel resolution is 5,120 x 2,880. Click here to see a 5k image. This is basically double the pixels that have been on other Apple “Retina” models. The new screen sits at a whopping 7 times higher resolution rate than full HD picture quality. Because of the sheer number of pixels on screen at one time, Apple went ahead and developed their own timing controller (TCON) just to make sure that each pixel lit up at the right time in the right spots.


It’s More Than Just A Pretty Picture

When you factor in that this new iMac is in the Retina family with the other models and that it’s working with a 5K display, you can already guess that it’s going to be working with some pretty good specs as well. The new Retina 5K iMac comes standard with a fourth generation Haswell Intel Core i5 quad-core processor running at 3.5GHz. This processor can be upgraded to the i7 processor to help it run at 4GHz though. The GPU is an AMD Radeon R9 290X with 2GB of RAM, standard. This too can be upgraded to a better AMD Radeon R9 295X and 4GB of RAM to ensure that there’s nothing that can slow the picture quality down. It comes with 8GB of RAM, standard, but can be upped to 32GB of RAM. It’s also working with a 1TB Fusion Drive. Needless to say it has a lot of speed, power, and memory. The best part is that it can all be upgraded.

imacs 5k


Is It Really Worth The Price Tag?

The new 5K Retina iMac starts at $2,499. For what it does and how powerful the machine actually is, it’s really not a bad investment. The only problem is that the screen resolution is too far ahead of it’s time, and that’s the main reason why you would look into this new desktop. There isn’t a lot of content out there that is available in 4K, let alone 5K. This isn’t to say that the display is going to look bad displaying full HD video or anything like that. I feel that it will be just fine. But that’s it. It will be “fine”. Not spectacular. Just what you would expect it to look like with a little bit of a sharper image. When you’re heavily involved in graphic design or illustrating, this screen’s resolution will definitely come in handy. It all comes down to preference.

At the end of the day, this new iMac is nothing to scoff at. It’s extremely powerful, and the screen is nothing short of breathtaking (albeit a bit unnecessary for today’s standards). Apple definitely delivered something that we can all get behind. Much better than the new iPad reveals. Well done Apple, we forgive you now.

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Oct 14

Is Apple Digging Its Own Grave By Releasing Similar Products?

Apple is THE company that everyone knows nowadays. Everywhere you look there are iPads, Macbooks, and iPhones. You might even still see an iPod Touch or two if you look hard enough. The point here is that Apple still remains on top they’re very well aware of that.

Every year they have multiple conferences and events to showcase their newest iterations of the iPad or iPhone. Maybe they’re showing off new software. Whatever the case may be, we can all rest assured that Apple will bring us a new iPad Mini, iPad Air, iPad, Wearable, Macbook, iPhone, or software. There may be a problem however. Apple may have just dug their own grave for some of their own products with the release of the iPhone 6.

A Quick History Lesson

apple textLets look back at the iPod Touch and the first iPhones. The iPhone was literally just an iPod Touch with a cellular plan. This slowly phased out the iPod Touch. Sales started steadily declining for that particular model and then the iPhone took over the sales. We all know that the iPod Touch was the successor to the original iPod and the iPod Nano. It’s a simple fact of something becoming obsolete with time. The iPod Touch was able to outdo the iPod Original because of it touch screen and usage of apps.

iphones vs touch

When the iPhone came out it was only available on one carrier. As time went on, it became available on more and more carriers and became cheaper. The iPhone became more upgraded to the point that its specs and functions outdid the iPod Touch, which started getting updated less and less. The iPhone made quick work of the iPod touch when the public started to take notice and realize that it was cheaper and more readily available.

SEE ALSO: Apple’s iPad Event Shows Off Their Newest Tablets, But Is It Anything To Take Notice Of?

What’s Popular Now?

When the iPad came out, many people (myself included) looked at it as just a big iPod Touch. Well as luck would have it, that was what a lot of people wanted. The larger screen and ability to get one with a cellular data plan made many as the question, “Well why not?”. Even now through a pricing view point, it wouldn’t even make sense to have the iPod Touch be in the Apple line up. Think about this. You could have a 32 GB iPod Touch, or you could have a 16 GB iPad Mini. The Mini is a small version for an iPad, almost like a “kid-sized”. There is not type of call function or text function on it, so it might be the better choice to by for a child that it looking to get a device such as that. Speaking of the iPad though, the iPad Air made huge headway until the Mini came out. Over the past year, other competitors have shown that the smaller tablets (7 and 8 inch models) have become more popular.
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iPhone 6 or iPad Mini

Here is where the dilemma takes place. The iPhone 6 is essentially Apple’s first “phablet”. The Mini is still slightly larger with more screen space, but the iPhone 6 could be seen as a “pocketable tablet” if need be. The iPhone 6 and 6 Plus both add real estate to the iPhone family.

iphone 6 plus vs ipad mini 3This could make the iPad Mini go the way of the iPod Touch however. You have a larger iPhone that could double as both and negates the need to carry two separate devices. Apple may be digging their own their own graver for some of their products. We just might see the iPad Mini going the way of the iPad Touch with the addition of the iPhone 6 “Phablet” now available. If sales start declining, rest assured that we can expect that.

I love Apple just as much as the next person, but this could be a classic case of “I am my own worst enemy” if Apple continues to develop products like this without any type of regard for future sales.


Oct 14

Watch Apple’s iPad Event Today Live!

apple logoToday is a big day for Apple fans! Apple is going to hold a huge event for the next generation iPad Air, iPad Mini and iMac lines. And if you are excited about it, you will be able to watch the whole event live!

This is a private press event and it will start at 10 a.m. ET/1 p.m. PT today at Apple headquarters in Cupertino, California. If you want to watch the event then you can go to Apple.com/live. Unfortunately, if you want to watch it you’ll have to use the Safari browser to be able to access it. It’s pretty fitting though.

It is expected that some of the big upgrades to the iPads are going to be the new A8 chip like the one featured in the new iPhone6 and iPhone 6 Plus, as well as a Touch ID fingerprint sensor. It is also possible that we will see the iPad available in the new gold color as well. The event for the new line of iPhones was last month, so there won’t be any news for anything besides iPads and iMacs.

There was a huge hype circling around the rumors that Apple was going to be putting out a 13 inch iPad. But in case you didn’t already know, Apple has decided to postpone that and focus more on the demand for the new iPhones. On top of that, iPad sales have been slowing down a lot. It will be cool to see what Apple has in store for later today to be able to combat that. I’m hoping to see something revolutionary and not just a new color scheme.

ipad mini 3

I’m not too sure what to expect hardware wise for the new iMacs. But it is expected that the new operating system, OS X Yosemite is going to make its debut today. They released a beta of it this past summer, but there will surely be big changes for the official version that everyone should be excited to see.

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Oct 14

iOS 8.02 now loaded on all iPads

Are you in need of an iPad rental for your next event? If you need one, or if you need a ton, Rentacomputer.com can deliver exactly what you need, when you need it.

ios 8.0.2

And you will be pleased to know that every single iPad that the company will be renting out is now loaded with the latest iOS version 8.02.

This new update fixes a lot of the bugs that many people were having problems with when iOS 8 first came out. Some apps were having problems accessing photos, which has now been fixed. There were also a few tweaks for using email, more consistent battery charging, and uploading pictures using Safari.

SEE ALSO: Apple’s Huge iPad Has Been Cancelled For This Year

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Oct 14

Apple’s Huge iPad Has Been Canceled For This Year

apple logoOk, so everyone was really excited about the huge new iPad that was supposed to drop this year. It would have been great, especially for business use and being productive on the go in general. But, on October 16th, Apple is going to have a huge announcement about their smaller tablet. They are expected now to announce their new iPad Air and iPad Mini, but apparently we’re not going to hear anything about the new big boy we were expecting.

The Wall Street Journal has said that Apple is going to push back the release of the 12.9 inch iPad to next year. They said the reason being is that there is a way bigger demand for the new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 plus than they even expected, and they are just going to focus on meeting those demands for a little while.

177776578The demand for the two new iPhones is way more than ever before, and the amount they are producing right now isn’t cutting it at all. In order for them to put the new 12.9 inch iPad into production they would have to take even more from a source that is already straining to keep up. It looks like the best we’re going to get this year is a 9.7 inch iPad.

ipad airs

Although it is disappointing, it does make sense. They have already sold well over 10 million new iPhones, which is record breaking. There has been a lot of talk about how iPad sales are going down the drain lately, and let’s face it… The iPhone 6 Plus is basically a tablet that can make phone calls. So whats the point?

The rumors of the bigger iPad were a little bit more than rumors. They all came from reliable sources, and Apple has already started making deals with tons of companies to supply them with the bigger iPad with special apps to help them run their company. But now that this is happening, we might not EVER see the 12.9 inch iPad. All anyone can really say at this point is that it is going to be a disappointing winter for everyone who was dead set on picking one of them up.

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Oct 14

Bill And Melinda Gates Rank #1 Among American Philanthropists

In the world of technical writing we (myself included) tend to focus on the technology itself a majority of the time. That is why it’s nice to sometimes step back and recognize the people behind that technology. This time we’re taking a look at the mastermind behind Microsoft Bill Gates and his wife Melinda as the two have been appointed the number one spot on Forbes’ 50 Top Givers in America list.

bill&melinda gates

Forbes ranked the most philanthropic people across the United States, singling out Gates and his wife, who donated $2.56 billion last year toward fighting disease and reforming education in addition to other ventures. One notable gift that Forbes cited in its ranking was $50 million dollars that the couple gave to the International Aids Vaccine Initiative. In the course of their lifetime, the couple has given out $30.2 billion, which is 37% of their net worth.

Gates and his wife coordinate their efforts through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The foundation works with other people to donate money and resources on trying to solve a select number of global problems and concerns. According to Forbes, “Mr. and Mrs. Microsoft continue to combat malaria, polio and other diseases abroad while working to reform education in the U.S. Major donations went to the World Health Organization, the Medicines for Malaria Venture and the U.S. fund for UNICEF.”

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Gates and his wife aren’t the only big names on the list. Coming in at #5 was Facebook CEO and co-founder Mark Zuckerberg. In 2013, Zuckerberg donated $991 million towards education and healthcare. Overall, Zuckerberg has donated $1.5 billion over his lifetime, representing 4% of his net worth. One donation noted by Forbes was one in the amount of $991 million given to the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, which makes grants across over 40 different countries.

Intel co-founder Gordon Moore and his wife Betty ranked #8, donating $321 million last year. The couple have donated $2.6 billion in their lifetime, 37% of their net worth. Their notable donation was $25 million to the University of California, San Francisco Medical Center. “The Intel co-founder and his wife’s foundation gave $2.2 million to Vanderbilt University to study nursing-workforce needs and $2.9 million to the Ocean Conservancy,” Forbes noted. “It also helped $37.8 million, five-year data and science partnership among three universities.”

Bill Gates Meets With German Government LeadersPierre Omidyar, the co-founder of eBay, and his wife Pamela took spot #10 on the list. A foundation that the couple runs “promotes education, financial inclusion, property rights, government transparency and internet access,” Forbes added. In 2013 the couple donated $294 million and have given out $1 billion over their lifetime.

Other big names on the list included Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen who gave $206 million with the organization Elephants Without Borders receiving $7 million. Dell founder Michael Dell and his wife Susan donated $100 million last year with half of that going to Dell’s collegiate alma mater the University of Texas. Former Oracle CEO Larry Ellison donated $54 million in 2013 with $20 million going toward the fight against polio.

Forbes worked along side with the Philanthropic Research Institute of Boca Raton, Florida, to help rank those Americans who gave the most money to charity last year. In order to come up with the top 50, PRI consolidated the list down to 530 semi-finalists from a total of 1,375 philanthropists.

Oct 14

Adobe Photoshop Is Coming To Chromebooks, And It Is All Cloud Based.

Chromebooks have quickly become a really great option for people on a budget who still want to get things done. Students are a great example of this. Now, as if Chromebooks weren’t already an awesome option for the money, they just started looking a whole lot better by partnering up with Adobe. Chromebooks are going to have their own special version of Photoshop that is going to be cloud based. It will be available to students and teachers who use Chromebooks in the classroom.

photoshop-chromeThey are calling the program “Project Photoshop Streaming”. Right now it is still in beta, and is available to select Creative Cloud subscribers. Both companies involved say that the streaming version of Photoshop is going to have pretty much all the same tools and features as the regular desktop version of the software. It is really nice that it is cloud based as well because photoshop is a pretty big program and a lot of computers have trouble running it. This version will be able to be accessed from the Chrome browser on Windows devices.

Another perk to this is the fact that it will always be automatically updated. You will never have to install an update ever. There is also no need to download files, upload files, re upload files, none of that. All of your work gets saved to the cloud directly from Photoshop.

creative cloudTo start with, this will only be available to a certain number of Adobe Education members that have a Creative Cloud subscription in North America. If you qualify, you can apply on your own behalf or on behalf of your institution on Adobe’s website.

This kind of changes the game when it comes to computers in the classroom. Classrooms generally need a ton of computers for their students and staff to use. Chromebooks were never really an option before, because first of all they are pretty new, and second of all they really couldn’t do much. But Google has really been stepping up their game since the Chromebook first hit the scene. There are new apps a cool things coming out for them all the time. This actually makes Chromebooks a really great option for bulk rentals. They are cost effective and becoming more useful every day.

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Sep 14

Could Windows Find Themselves On The Comeback With “Windows 10″?

I’m not the type to down talk Windows or anything from Microsoft, unless it’s the Xbox (sorry, Sony fanboy in that sense). I’ve worked with Microsoft Windows for the majority of my life, and it’s always felt like home to me. I think that Microsoft has always been one of the top tech companies out there. I feel as if they’re slowly going the way of Gateway however. Why do I say that? Well they’ve not done really well with catering to their customers wants and needs unfortunately. Their software has not been delivering and I’m not the only one who thinks that. There just so happens to be a new event scheduled for tomorrow, however, that shows that we may be getting a look at the new (and hopefully improved) software.

The Name Game

There have been a few different reference names for Microsoft’s new version of Windows. Naturally, “Windows 9″ is the most logical and what many of the people have been calling it. The name “Threshold” is still being circulated as well however because of leak that appeared earlier this week. There is also the possibility of the new software just being called “Windows”. While that might seem a bit odd and confusing there is a reason for it. Microsoft’s CEO, Satya Nadella, had the thought of “One Windows” as a name possibility since the “Windows Phone” recently let go of the “Phone” in their name. No matter if the new software is called “Windows”, “Windows 9″, or “Ham and Cheese”, it doesn’t really matter. What is going to matter is how well the software runs in comparison to what has been seen with Windows 8/8.1.

windows10Update: The New Windows OS Will Be Called “Windows 10″.

Problems In The Past

When Windows released their Windows 8 and 8.1 software, they were met with less than stellar reviews. The bad reviews weren’t just for the faint of heart either. Many of Microsoft’s die-hard customers weren’t exactly happy with the new software and with good reason. Microsoft was pushing too hard to go after the consumer market instead of doing what they have always done best; catering to the enterprise of it all. They were trying to push a traditional desktop style operating system to be something more mobile in order to cater to what was popular. By doing that, it left many wondering how it was going to work as the ol’ trusty workstation that they’ve been before. This is where Microsoft needs to make their change with the new OS.

Stop Trying To Be Apple

windows10startI feel that Microsoft may have been dealing with an identity crisis. Instead of trying to push for a more “mobile” styling desktop OS, they should have been focusing on what they do well and how to do it better. Windows is still the top OS being used by many businesses today. Even though many enterprise workers still use this OS, they’ve been left in the dust because Microsoft was too busy trying to play touchscreen. The ability to add touch functionality to the Windows 8 operating system is nothing more than a novelty. Windows has always been known for productivity. Leave the touch sensors and “flappy birds” to Apple and Samsung. Don’t worry about the mobile market and worry more about how to make the enterprise happy.

Tuesday, September 30th, is when it all goes down. We can expect Windows to release their new software and show off some of the new top key functions. Hopefully, Microsoft has seen the error of their ways and will rectify the problem by putting the enterprise as their main focus instead of the the mobile consumer market. Microsoft may be down, but something tells me they are far from out.

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Sep 14

Apple Users! You’re Not A Safe As You Think You Are!

apple logoCalling all Apple users out there! We all know that our operating systems are known for being some of the most secure operating systems out on the market currently. While many of the people using Windows OS might deal with bugs and viruses, you don’t have to worry about that. You are exclusive. You are bulletproof… Right? You may have thought you were. You may have felt that your data archives and computers were safe. Unfortunately, even the mighty can fall. Apple computers and Linux users can now join those Windows OS users who have to deal with viruses and bugs. Why do you ask? There’s now a new “bug” out there affecting Apple and Linux, and it is a nasty one.

Apple Is Shell Shocked

Apple’s operating systems are known for being very secure, mainly due to the fact that Windows computers have been the main desktops used, generally. Because Window’s were more used, they were more targeted. Now, a new bug called “Shellshock”, or the “Bash Bug” is affecting Apple. We all remember the Heartbleed Virus and having to change our passwords, but this supposedly is much, much worse. You may be wondering how it could get worse than having these hackers access your data. Well what if they were able to control your computer entirely? That’s enough to make anyone get nervous. This new virus can take over individual computers and even servers to pick and choose the specific machines they’d like to access. They can then alter data, steal it, manipulate different source codes, or even delete data. While, yes there may still be a way that you get notified by seeing the date that someone was last altered, it still doesn’t change the fact that the data and your computer have been tampered with.

Potential Impact

491324833 (1)

Cyber crime is not something to be taken lightly, and many computer companies understand this. This is why there are already patches being developed to counteract the virus. That being said this is, in fact, worse than Heartbleed because it can access servers and machines alike. The last thing that needs to happen is a cyber criminal gaining access to a large company’s server, and then they can access any computer on that server. All of the passwords, data, documents, blueprints, business plans, etc. would then be in the hands of someone who could then sell it to the highest bidder. With Heartbleed, all you really had to do was change a few passwords, where as this virus is going to require a bit more than that. Shellshock is not to be taken lightly at all.

What Can We Do?


If your system has already been infected, there is really nothing that you can do. Changing your passwords and login information at that point won’t matter. The damage has already been done and the cyber criminals still have access to the server and its units. Thankfully, there are patches being mad that will be able to work with the systems and remedy the situation. At that point is when it’s advised to take precaution and change your passwords. There are many patches already being sent out to different systems in order to fix the problems. Apple OS X IS infected, and it can only be assumed that Apple is working on a patch to protect its many customers.

We dealt with the Heartbleed virus and there may be some of us feeling the affects. Now we have yet another threat that is now affecting Apple users who once thought they were “untouchable”. Cyber criminals are getting smarter, so that means we should all step up our security measures.

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