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Google Chrome designed for simplicity, speed and security

Google released its Chrome operating system to the open-source community on Thursday and said it has designed the netbook OS to be faster, simpler and more secure than existing ones. However, Google also made it clear that Chrome will not be able to replicate everything that other operating systems do. For example, Chrome OS will only run Web-hosted applications and its peripherals will have to comply with specific hardware reference designs. This means it will not even be able to run applications built for Google’s own Android mobile operating system. As such, when the first Chrome OS netbooks hit the market at the end of 2010, Google expects them to be “companion” devices whose owners will also have conventional PCs in their houses.

Dell sales down from last year

Dell reported third-quarter profits on Thursday that were down 54 percent from this time last year, though the company said it was encouraged by a slight uptick in sales from the prior quarter. Sales were down from last year in all of Dell’s main business units, including the large-enterprise division, where revenue dropped 23 percent, and the small-and-medium-sized business segment, where revenue fell 19 percent. Still, Chief Financial Officer Brian Gladden said Dell saw some “encouraging signs” and that business had started to improve in some commercial markets.

China conducting cyberwarfare against U.S.

Cyberattacks on the U.S. Department of Defense — many of them coming from China — have jumped sharply in 2009, a U.S. congressional committee reported Thursday. Citing data provided by the U.S. Strategic Command, the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission said that there were 43,785 malicious cyber incidents targeting Defense systems in the first half of the year. That’s a big jump. In all of 2008, there were 54,640 such incidents. If cyber attacks maintain this pace, they will jump 60 percent this year. The committee is looking into the security implications of the U.S.’ trade relationship with China. It released its annual report to Congress Thursday, concluding that a “large body of both circumstantial and forensic evidence strongly indicates Chinese state involvement in such activities.”

Remote optomotrist: there’s an app for that

An Indian eye hospital in Bangalore is piloting software that will push retinal images collected from patients in remote locations to doctors’ iPhones. Doctors can then quickly send their diagnosis and recommendations from their iPhones. Doctors are more likely to have access at all times to their mobile phones than their laptop computers. The hospital plans to use the technology to test infants for a potentially blinding condition called Retinopathy of Prematurity, besides other conditions such as ocular cancers.

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