By msmash from Slashdot's what's-happening department
An anonymous reader shares a Ghacks report: Google made a change in Chrome 57 that removes options from the browser to manage plugins such as Google Widevine, Adobe Flash, or the Chrome PDF Viewer. If you load chrome://plugins in Chrome 56 or earlier, a list of installed plugins is displayed to you. You can use it, among other things, to disable plugins that you don't require. While you can do the same for some plugins, Flash and PDF Viewer, using Chrome's Settings, the same is not possible for the DRM plugin Widevine, and any other plugin Google may add to Chrome in the future. Starting with Chrome 57, that option is no longer available. This means essentially that Chrome users won't be able to disable -- some -- plugins anymore, or even list the plugins that are installed in the web browser. Please note that this affects Google Chrome and Chromium.Further report on BetaNews.Read Replies (0)
By msmash from Slashdot's not-as-planned department
As anticipated, wearable leader Fitbit kicked off the week by announcing a six-percent reduction in global work force, following disappointing fourth quarter financials. From a report: A preliminary statement issued this morning details the loss of 110 jobs, as part of a "reorganization of its business" designed to "creat[e] a more focused and efficient operating model." The news follows what has been a disappointing several months for the wearable space at large, impacting even Fitbit, the dominant player in the space. As rivals like Jawbone grapple with the future and the smartwatch space looks dismal, however, the Fitbit has been making acquisitions, including the once promising smartwatch pioneer Pebble, which met with its own struggles as the year drew to a close. The financials detail 6.5 million devices sold for the fourth quarter of last year, with quarterly revenue and annual revenue growth both falling below the company's guidance range.Read Replies (0)
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's 3D-glasses department
Released five days ago, Resident Evil 7: Biohazard already has over 800,000 players -- and 84,036 of them are using a PlayStation VR headset. An anonymous reader quotes Digital Trends:
These numbers show that VR might have some real legs if compelling software is made... The numbers are also being updated live, so expect them to go up in the coming weeks. Earlier this week, numbers were in the 60-thousand range, meaning that positive buzz is driving gamers to pick up the game along with a VR headset.
Unfortunately for many gamers, Resident Evil 7: Biohazard is a PSVR exclusive, meaning PC gamers that own an HTC Vive or Oculus Rift are unable to experience the game in VR... Luckily, patient PC gamers will be able to experience the game in VR next year, when Sony and Capcom's PSVR exclusivity deal expires.
It's the first Resident Evil game using the first-person point-of-view. Are there any Slashdot readers who have already tried gaming with a VR headset?Read Replies (0)
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's second-Second-Life department
An anonymous reader writes:
After four years of development, Sansar, the new virtual reality world from Second Life's creators will arrive later this year on Oculus Rift and HTC Vive headsets. "It is trying to solve some of the big problems that plagued Second Life for years," reports MIT Technology Review, "such as that most users come in through what is essentially a front door and have a hard time finding things to do once they get in... In the demos I tried, I navigated via an atlas that shows a simple clickable thumbnail image of each destination along with its name."
But it still has to prove itself to users like John Artz, an associate professor at George Washington University who once taught a class about using Second Life for business applications. Artz "thinks Sansar will still suffer from the same fundamental issue that dogs Second Life: while the technology behind it is good, he says, it just got boring after a while."
Second Life still has 800,000 monthly users -- and in Sansar, virtual land will be cheaper, with Linden Lab concentrating "more on making money from selling virtual objects like clothing for avatars and furniture."Read Replies (0)
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's softening-software-markets department
An anonymous reader writes:
Microsoft is having trouble selling $7-a-month subscriptions to Office 365. In the last three months of 2016, Microsoft added just 900,000 new subscriptions -- and throughout all of 2016, subscriptions increased by just 4.3 million. In fact, a chart at IT World shows that new subscriptions actually peaked in a year ago, with a steady decline in new subscribers ever since. "In each of the last three quarters, Office 365 grew by about 900,000 subscribers, the smallest quarterly increase since early 2014," they write. "Prior to the nine-month stretch of 2016, subscribers were accumulating at rates two to three times larger per quarter."
This explains why Microsoft announced 97 new markets for the software nine weeks ago. So far after four years, Microsoft's found just 25 million subscribers for Office 365 -- and it's not clear how many of those came from their $100 five-user packages. (Although those figures suggest that Office 365 subscriptions are still earning Microsoft at least half a billion dollars a year.)Read Replies (0)
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's Rocket-Road department
SpaceX is livestreaming a competition between hyperloop pods from outside their headquarters in Hawthorne, California, and at least one Los Angeles newspaper is also covering the event live on Facebook.
"This competition is the first of its kind anywhere in the world," SpaceX writes, noting that 27 teams put their pods through a "litany" of pre-qualifying tests hoping to qualify for a run on the track on "Rocket Road".
An anonymous reader writes:
The mile-long track is "roughly half the width of a full-scale Hyperloop system," according to Fortune -- but it's still a near-total vacuum inside, making it possible for the magnetically-levitated pods to attain extremely high speeds. "The winning team will be the one that hits the highest top speed -- then stops before hitting the end of the tube. 'There'll be a bit of tension," Elon Musk mused. 'Will it brake in time?'"
Sunday's event "will mark the first time anyone gets to see the Hyperloop pods in action," according to Business Insider, which has photos and descriptions of the 27 pods -- including the MIT Hyperloop and the crowdfunded non-profit rLoop, which crowdsourced their open source development effort on Reddit.
SpaceX will also host a second competition will be held this summer focused on one criterion: speed.Read Replies (0)