McDonald's launches online content service

McDonald's, along with the digital content company Akoo, today announced that its flagship store in Schaumburg's Woodfield Mall has rolled out "M-Venue," a wireless service that allows customers to stream music and videos while eating a Big Mac.

PDP makers eying larger-size segments to counter LCD trends

PDP (plasma display panel) makers are now betting on larger-size segments to counter the LCD technology, according to PDP TV makers.

Cambridge researchers developing rollable displays

Culver City (CA) - Univeristy of Cambridge researchers are developing new structures that can roll up without hinges or locks. The morphing structures could be used in future laptop screens, keyboards or even for reusable packaging. According to Dr. Keith Seffen of Cambridge's Department of Engineering, the structures will not require any advanced manufacturing processes or special materials.

Caterpillar envisions robotic bulldozers

Robotic bulldozers and other construction equipment could autonomously mine for precious metals or help build future houses. Caterpillar, the famous maker of heavy construction equipment, is developing robotic and remotely-controlled construction vehicles that take advantage of GPS navigation.

Wii, not Xbox 360, may have prompted PS3 price cut in Japan

Chicago (IL) - Sony's unexpected price cut of the base PS3 comes just two days after Microsoft's announcement to offer a bargain priced HD DVD price for the Xbox 360. But Sony may not be worried about Microsoft, but rather about a strong Nintendo Wii in Japan, Chris Crotty of market research firm Isuppli suggests. And there may little reason for Sony to extend the price cut to the U.S.

MRC shows more powerful solar cells

Today, solar cells are not a very efficient way to produce electricity, even if the source of energy is free. They can be manufactured from thick crystalline silicon wafers (300 microns thick) or thinner non-crystalline ones (about 2 microns thick). But 'thin' cells built are less efficient than 'thick' ones, even if they're cheaper to produce.

Microsoft to consider free versions of Works apps

Redmond (WA) - Reuters this morning reported that Microsoft could soon be offering free online versions of its word processing and spreadsheet applications from its "Works" suite of applications. The online would be supported by ads embedded into software - much like Google Spreadsheets and Writely.

EA preps in-flight video games

Electronic Arts, together with in-flight entertainment company DTI Software, today announced a plan to provide multiple airline companies with in-flight versions of their software, largely headlined by The Sims 2. Software from EA's will make up the rest of the initial list of available games.

Virtual bees help robots see in 3D

Copying the humble honeybee's foraging methods could give robots better 3D vision, researchers say. Robot explorers could identify points of interest by mimicking the way bees alert others of promising foraging spots.

Nokia promotes environmental conservation plan

A group of European mobile phone manufacturers have teamed up with recycling companies and environmental organizations to launch an environmental awareness program.

MIT researchers developing a quarter-sized turbine engine

MIT researchers have started putting entire gas-turbine engines on tiny silicon chips. With the help of some military funding, researchers have fashioned millimeter-sized compressors, combustion chambers and turbines and placed them on layers of silicon wafers.

Strong second half shaping up for large-size TFT LCD panels, says Isuppli

Despite achieving shipment growth of only 2.7% in the second quarter of 2006, the large-size TFT LCD panel market is in shape for an excellent second half of 2006, as tight supply and price increases bolster the market, according to iSuppli.

Mooly Eden: A look into the origins of Core 2 Duo

Santa Clara (IL) - If you were to look into the story of Intel's latest microprocessors, you'd quickly learn that they aren't based so much on their seemingly most likely predecessor, the Pentium 4. Track down the family line and you end up at Banias, the first Pentium M. Join us for an interview with Mooly Eden, the man in charge of a project that convinced Intel to put the Gigahertz campaign into reverse.

Warner engineers file for triple-format DVD patent

The electronics industry is in a fine mess, with two blue-laser disc standards (Blu-ray and HD-DVD) competing to succeed ordinary red-laser DVDs.

Microsoft takes on YouTube with "Soapbox"

Planning to take advantage of the wildly popular video sharing sites, Microsoft has launched its own online video hosting service, further adding to the number of Internet companies that are trying to emulate the extreme popularity of YouTube.

A solar boat to cross the Atlantic

A group of Swiss people will soon attempt to realize the first Atlantic crossing with a solar boat. This ship, named "sun21," is a 14-meter-long catamaran able to sleep 5 or 6 persons.

Web flaws race ahead in 2006

Less rigor in Web programming, an increasing variety of software, and restrictions on Web security testing have combined to make flaws in Web software the most reported security issues this year to date, according to the latest data from the Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) project.

Intel takes final hurdle on way to mass-produced silicon laser chips

Santa Clara (CA) - Researchers at Intel and the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) today said they have succeeded in building the world's first hybrid silicon laser using standard silicon manufacturing processes. The technology could be become a key enabler to make photonic interconnects in mainstream communications and computing devices a reality.

Warner warms up to YouTube with media sharing agreement

Warner Music Group (WMG) and YouTube today announced a joint partnership in which Warner will distribute its copyrighted content through the increasingly popular video sharing site. Warner is the first company to announce support for YouTube's new "content identification and royalty reporting" system, which YouTube says will be generally available by the end of the year.

Intel to announce "lightspeed" chip

Researchers at Intel and the University of California, Santa Barbara are expected to announce the development of a chip that can transfer data using photons instead of wires.