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Video streaming service Plex on Thursday announced the availability of a beta version of its Plex Live TV. The live-TV streaming launch follows last year's introduction of the Plex DVR, which provides users with free over-the-air access to 86 of Nielsen's 100 most watched shows in the United States. The Plex DVR service allows users to manage their recorded programming via Android TV, iOS devices, Windows and Mac, as well a variety of set-top boxes, such as Roku, Chromecast, Amazon Fire and Apple TV, and the Xbox and PlayStation gaming systems.
Reacting to the U.S. withdrawal from the Paris Agreement, several high-tech industry leaders have pledged renewed environmental efforts. "Disappointed with today's decision. Google will keep working hard for a cleaner, more prosperous future for all," tweeted CEO Sundar Pichai. "Withdrawing from the Paris climate agreement is bad for the environment, bad for the economy, and it puts our children's future at risk," wrote Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. "We will double our efforts to fight climate change," tweeted Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff.
I didn't attend Computex this year, and that was sad for everything but my budget, because there was a ton of cool stuff announced at the show. Dell, HP and Lenovo showed off new designs that were both attractive and compelling. Mixed-reality headsets hit; based on Intel and Microsoft technology, they were far more affordable than the strong virtual reality stuff already in market. New core wars broke out, as AMD's 16 Core Threadripper was challenged by Intel's 18 core i9. It seems that gaming was huge at Computex this year.
Apple raised the curtain on HomePod, its upcoming smart speaker, during Monday's keynote presentation at its Worldwide Developers Conference. The company also announced some desktop OS features for the iPad, and revealed its plans to become an augmented reality powerhouse. "Just like iPod reinvented music in our pockets, HomePod is going to reinvent music in our homes," Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president for worldwide marketing, told an enthusiastic crowd at the San Jose Convention Center in California.
New voices for Siri and peer-to-peer payments are among the new features in the next version of Apple's mobile device operating system iOS 11, previewed at the company's annual Worldwide Development Conference on Monday. "With the new operating system, Apple has doubled down on many of the applications it has developed for iOS," said Ross Rubin, the principal analyst at Reticle Research. "Much of the enhancement of the OS has come via those core applications versus general new functionality," he said.
"I've helped shape the conversation," said Debbie Berebichez, chief data scientist at Metis. "It's empowered me to mentor young women and also to shape policy. At Metis, we offer a scholarship to women and minorities, so we do things actively to bring women in. I also try to recruit and hire women. Even though it's a tech company, over 60 percent of the employees at Metis are women, and they also occupy a lot of leadership roles. I always try to do things that change the conversation."
GitHub this week released the results of its survey on open source software development, practices and worldwide communities. Responses from more than 6,000 participants show the importance of open source documentation and reveal some of the problems missing or poorly done documentation can have on users and project adoption. The survey also reveals an ongoing concern about nasty interactions among some open source developers, rudeness toward community members, and negative attitudes toward female programmers.
All of the major video game developers, publishers and console hardware makers, as well as many retail buyers and the gaming press, will descend on Los Angeles for E3 2017 next week. The annual event -- a showcase for computer, video and mobile games and related products -- will kick off officially on Tuesday and run through Thursday at the Los Angeles Convention Center. However, it actually will begin on Monday with press briefings from Microsoft, Sony, Bethesda, Electronic Arts and Ubisoft.
Arms, the highly anticipated fighting game for Nintendo's Switch, will be available next Friday, and based on the early reviews, the company just may have found the magic bullet. Nintendo's Switch console, launched earlier this year, has been something of a surprise success. Prior to its launch, it seemed like a risky play for the company, which has been bobbing and weaving in its efforts to appeal to couch potatoes, e-sports enthusiasts and outdoor adventurers alike. The Switch needed a potential game-changer.
The two mammoth events last week were the Apple developers conference keynote and ex-FBI chief James Comey's appearance at a Senate committee hearing. Now I'm sure a lot of folks didn't have the time to watch both events -- and particularly for the Comey event, I'm sure the coverage has the right and the left believing very different realities. Apple is becoming more and more like a typical tech firm -- that is, long on technology and short on magic. This year, its initial big focus was on how fast the Apple Watch can launch apps.
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