HP unveils 4K, 5K, and curved displays at CES 2015

By Jacob Kastrenakes

High-resolution displays are quickly becoming the norm, and HP is introducing a handful of new ones today to give buyers even more options. The company is expanding its display line with the addition of two 4K models and its first 5K model. It’s also introducing an extra-wide curved display, though it doesn’t quite reach 4K resolution. Most of the displays are selling for under $1,000.

The Z27s, a 27-inch 4K display.


The two 4K models that HP is introducing are identical save for their size. The Z24s and Z27s are 23.8-inch and 27-inch displays with a 16:9 aspect ratio and a 4K resolution. That works out to a pixel density of 185ppi for the smaller model and 163ppi for the larger model (for comparison, the 15-inch MacBook Pro has a pixel density of 220 ppi). Each model includes 4 USB 3.0 ports and a mixture of HDMI, Mini DisplayPort, and other inputs. The Z24s will be available in April for $549, while the Z27s should be available later this month for $749.

The Z27q, HP’s first 5K display.

For its 5K display, HP wants this first model to define what it’s going to being doing at this even higher resolution. As it turns out, that definition is fairly tame, but there’s really only so much you want out a display anyway. The Z27q is a 27-inch, 16:9, 5K display with a 218ppi pixel density. Like the 4K models, it also has four USB 3.0 ports, but HP didn’t say what other inputs it has. It’ll be available in March for $1,299.

The Envy 34c (also called the Z34c), a 34-inch curved display with a 21:9 aspect ratio.

Curved displays aren’t brand new for HP, but the new Envy 34c is among HP’s first. It’s a 34-inch display with a 3440 by 1440 resolution and a 21:9 aspect ratio. HP says that it’s designed the display to have a reduced reflectiveness, hopefully making it easier to see the entire width of it. There are also built-in speakers on either side of the screen. It’s going to be made available in April for $999. HP is also already selling a smaller curved display, 27-inches diagonally, for $399.

HP is positioning all of these as displays that’ll help you get work done. While it suggests design and gaming too, most of what it’s been showing off on these are enormous spreadsheets. That’s probably not the best way to use a high-resolution display like this, but that may be part of the point: soon, this will just be an average display — and everything, even down to your boring spreadsheets, will look seriously good.


Motix wants to replace your mouse with fine-tuned finger pointing

I’m a sucker for motion controls. From Leap Motion and Kinect games to industrial-level tools made by minds behind Minority Report’s interface, if it’s an attempt to kill mouse, I want to try it.

The Motix is trying to follow the same footsteps. The system is one part motion sensor (placed near the back of your keyboard) and one part tactile strip (placed just under your spacebar) compatible with both Windows and OS X. The idea is this: put one thumb the pad and use a finger to control the mouse without having to move your hand from the keyboard. You can adjust the sensitivity of the finger by moving your thumb left or right on the strip.


In theory, that’s great. In practice, it’s a bit wonky. It took about five minutes to get a handle of the broader strokes. That’s to be expected; unlike Leap Motion, the Motix is designed for smaller, more precise finger movements. There’s also an element of being able to keep your finger still and mid-air while you use the thumb on your other hand to “tap” the strip to simulate a mouse click.

It requires calibration to use properly, and the size of your hands is a factor in how comfortable or effective you’ll be. I watched creator Brent Safer pinpoint exact lines in a Microsoft Word document, while at best I could select apps from the home screen.

I’m hopeful for the Motix, but if want to give it a shot, know ahead of time you’ll have to put some time into getting the hang of it. Safer says the software will evolve over time; the hardware will be available starting next month for $119.99.


Report: Microsoft Could Ditch IE For a New Browser Named "Spartan"

by Darren Orf

Report: Microsoft Could Ditch IE For a New Browser Named "Spartan"

Windows 10 should bring lots of changes to Microsoft’s operating system, including a possible overhaul of Internet Explorer. Many believed the beleaguered browser would be getting an update with codename “Spartan,” including much needed additions like extension support. Now, ZDNet reports that Spartan may in fact be a new browser entirely.

So what’s different? Well, rumors say the underlying structure of IE/Spartan won’t be changing that much. According to ZDNet’s Mary Jo Foley, IE will continue to use Microsoft’s JavaScript and rendering engines. However, the browser will be light-weight and akin to its rivals like Chrome and Firefox with extension support. This also brings up the question if Spartan will be portable on non-Windows systems, such as Android, iOS, or OS X. We don’t know as of yet, but if it truly is mimicking Chrome and Firefox, the idea isn’t too crazy.

Foley’s undisclosed sources say Windows 10 will ship with both Spartan and IE11, though the latter may be for backwards compatibility only, and that Spartan will also be available on the Windows 10 mobile OS. The name Spartan could be a codename for Microsoft’s new browser, but the company does have an affinity for using Halo references for its software (i.e. Cortana). Whatever it will be called, this news seems more involved than just changing the name of the browser as the IE team suggested during a Reddit AMA earlier this year.

Spartan seems like it could be a “two birds, one stone” solution. Kill off the brand name that has become synonymous with poor browser performance, and create something new that addresses all the shortcomings of its forebears. Every new leak makes Windows 10 seem like the software savior Microsoft needs. Hopefully we’ll learn more about Spartan and everything else about Microsoft’s new OS at the Windows 10 event in late January. [ZDNet]

Source: http://gizmodo.com/report-microsoft-could-ditch-ie-for-a-new-browser-name-1676038757?utm_campaign=socialflow_gizmodo_facebook&utm_source=gizmodo_facebook&utm_medium=socialflow


12 December 2014 


We are forming a new company, with a new leadership team, and a new culture, putting our customers at the heart of the business”

• Will invest US$400M in Broadband Expansion
• Guarantees a low-price broadband package, with wider access to all
• Promises to create 500 skilled jobs in the region within five years
• Supports Net Neutrality and Number Portability

Cable and Wireless Communications (CWC) and Columbus International Inc. (Columbus) today announced a ground-breaking customer charter that will guide how the new company would operate following the approval and closing of their merger.

In listing a suite of commitments, CWC’s CEO Phil Bentleysaid that the new company plans to revolutionize telecommunications across the Caribbean. NewCo will invest US$400M to expand its broadband infrastructure, with Bentley noting, “This merger will result in the most extensive fibre infrastructure ever constructed in the region, providing wider access to all, specifically targeting low income households.We will ensure that all our customers have affordable access, while also providing industry leading 1 gigabyte per secondbroadband speeds for those customers who want an unparalleled online experience”.

Bentley also pledged that the new company formed from the merger of CWC/Columbus would create more than 500 jobs between now and 2019 through growth in its services and by reviewing current outsourcing arrangements. “We will enhance the quality of our customers’ experience, as we invest in jobs closer to our Caribbean customers, “he said.

In giving customers more choices, the new company will become the leading regional supporter of net neutrality and provide full access to legal ‘over-the-top’ (OTT) services. The company also re-affirmed its commitment for Local Number Portability (LNP), which will enable customers to exercise the freedom of keeping their telephone numbers, should they choose to switch operators. “We are keen to facilitate consumer choice – it’s our customers who define serviceexcellence – and the freedom to access OTT services and to port mobile or fixed line telephone numbers is a key element of our strategy,” Bentley said.

With the introduction of a ‘no-contract’ service offering, customers will have the ability to transfer landline, video and broadband services at any time, to any provider. Columbus CEO Brendan Paddick indicated, “Our job is to keep our customers satisfied, and if we do not deliver an exceptional experience, we can’t expect their patronage. You can’t contract customer loyalty – you have to earn it”.

Bentley indicated that “With these commitments, our proposed merger will bring huge benefits to the region – creating jobs, providing customers with superior broadband access, and transforming our customer experience – underpinned by service excellence and innovation. We are forming a new company, with a new leadership and a new culture, putting our customers at the heart of our business.”

About Cable & Wireless Communications

Cable & Wireless Communications Plc (CWC) is a full-service communications provider operating in 16 countries throughout the Caribbean and Latin America. Operating four leading businesses: – Cable and Wireless PanamaLIME,(the Caribbean excluding The Bahamas), BTC (The Bahamas) and Cable and Wireless Seychelles; CWC offers mobile, broadband, TV, domestic and international fixed line services in most of our markets serving over 5.6m customers. CWC also provides premium data centre hosting, telecoms, domestic and international managed data network services and custom IT Service Solutions to businesses and governments through the new unit, Cable & Wireless Business Solutions. Our mission is to grow customer relationships and lifetime value by becoming #1 for Customer Service. We are the market leader in most products they offer and territories they serve.

For more information visit: www.cwc.com

About Columbus International Inc.

Columbus International Inc. is a privately held diversified telecommunications company based in Barbados. The Company provides digital cable television, broadband Internet and digital landline telephony in Trinidad, Jamaica, Barbados, Grenada, St. Vincent & the Grenadines, St. Lucia and Curacao under the brand name Flow and in Antigua under the brand name Karib Cable. Columbus also provides next generation connectivity and IT solutions, managed networking and cloud-based services under the brand Columbus Business Solutions. Through its subsidiary, Columbus Networks, the Company provides capacity and IP services, corporate data solutions and data centre hosting throughout 42 countries in the greater Caribbean, Central American and Andean region. Through its fully protected, ringed submarine fibre optic network spanning more than 42,300 km and its 38,000 km terrestrial fibre and coaxial network, Columbus’ 3,150 plus professionals provide advanced telecom services to a diverse residential and corporate client base of over 700,000 customers.

Source: http://www.lime.com/jm/content/new-company-be-formed-cwccolumbus-merger-will-transform-customer-service-experience

40 free resources every designer should know


Ever wondered where designers get their resources to help them succeed with a project? Here is a list of great resources including sites, PSD. files, actions, UI elements, mock ups, et cetera. Best of all, they are totally free and available for you to download.

Bookmark this post so that you can always look back at this great list that can help you succeed.

1. Fribbble

Icons for your website, an iPhone mock up or PSD’s for your landing page, Fribbble is the place to be.

fribbble 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

2. Behance project template

Many of us struggle when posting a project at Behance. How do we get it to make it look right? First of all, read this article – then download this nifty background template.

behance 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

3. psddd.co

Another great site to get free PSD files, blurred background or UI elements.

psd 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

4. COLOURlovers

Struggling to get the perfect color combination? This is a site that I go to. It’s perfect for some visual inspiration!

colourlovers 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

5. CG textures

A great site where you can download free stock images. From rocks, sky to trees. Very handy when it comes down to matte painting!

cgtextures 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

6. Subtle Patterns

In need of some high quality patterns? No need to look further, Subtle Patterns have a diverse gallery from around 400 patterns for you to download.

subtlepattern 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

7. Webydo

Webydo lets you design a website for free – without code. Hallelujah!

webydo 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know8. GuideGuide

Guides can be a pain in the ass when it comes down to Web design, so here is a simple solution.

guide 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

9. No more banding

Often we experience banding when working with gradients within Photoshop. With this action, you can say farewell to them and make gradients look more smooth.

banding 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

10. Gridzzly

Allows you to make your own grid paper that you can print! Handy for sketches or when you want to make some typographic images and need to be exact.

grid 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

11. Makeappicon

This tool resizes and optimizes your icon designs into all formats needed for iOS and Android mobile app!

makeappicon 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

12. Perfect Effects 3 

Designed specifically for photographers. With Perfect Effects 3, you’ll find intuitive and powerful tools that make it easy to add effects that can be difficult or time-consuming to create in Photoshop, Lightroom, Photoshop Elements or Aperture.
effects 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

13. Cut & Slice

Use Cut & Slice to export your assets to different devices in seconds. Improve your workflow by just naming your layers.cutandslice 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

14. Layrs Control 2

A free Photoshop extension of a collection of seven scripts that make tedious job easier.

layrs 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

15. Hexy

It’s a pain to have to select layers, highlight pieces of text and open the Color Picker to simply grab the hex value of a particular color. Hexy allows you to use the Eyedropper tool to simply click on the color of the object you’re after and copies it directly to your clipboard.

hex 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

16. WhatTheFont!

Seen a font in use and want to know what it is? Submit a screenshot to WhatTheFont to find the closest matches in its database.

whatthefont 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know17. Typewolf

Typewolf shows fonts in use on actual websites, as well as background info about the font and personal recommendations for similar fonts.

typefont 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

18. Size Marks

Size Marks is a helpful Photoshop script for Web designers and front-end engineers. This script converts rectangular marquee to labeled measurement mark.

size marks show 40 free resources every designer should know

19. Velositey Version 2

Velositey lets you design a website within seconds in Photoshop, letting you pick from several templates and modules.

velositey 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

20. FontAwesomePS

Search for an icon and click to create a new layer shape which you can easily edit.

fontawesome 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

21. Liveshare PS

With LiveShare PS you can now broadcast any Photoshop document to as many people as you want through an instant LiveShare meeting. If you make a change to your Photoshop document, the tool will instantly see your changes in the LiveShare meeting—you don’t even have to hit the save button!

liveshare 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

22. Photoshop Share plugin

Share your design instantly within Photoshop using Layer Hero’s Photoshop Share plugin.

share 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

23. Prisma

Ever missed the global color swatches from Illustrator in Photoshop? Prisma brings them consistently to all supported applications.

prisma 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

24. Free Lorem Ipsum Generator

The best Lorem Ipsum generator plugin for Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign and Dreamweaver.

Free Lorem Ipsum Generator 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

25. Free Behance Presentation Builder

Helps you build your Behance portfolio presentations in a click with a free PSD File and PS Action.

behancebuilder 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

26. Kaku

A simple Photoshop plugin to translate your text layers to a different language.

kaku 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

27. Instagram Filters

A nice 13-filter pack that replicates the app Instagram for Photoshop.

instagram filer pack 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

28. VSCO Cam Effect in Photoshop Tutorial

Our friends at Go Media posted this stunning tutorial by Simon Hartmann, in which you can recreate a VSCO kind of effect within Photoshop. Have fun!

vsco 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

29. Social Kit

Social Kit by Made by Source covers images, profile pictures and ad banners for social media in a free up-to-date Photoshop plugin.

social 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

30. Mobile UI Blueprint psd files

Free Mobile UI elements PSD files by designer Chrometaphore.

mobileuiblueprint 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

31. Free Images

Previously known as sxc.hu, Free Images provides over 395,000 stock photos to download.

freeimages 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

32. UI Cloud

The largest user interface design database in the world, with over 46,608 UI elements to download.

uicloud 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

33. Mock Up Zones

Mock Up Zones have great collection of free Mock Ups for you to download – from iPads, iPhones, business cards to shirts.

mockupzones 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

34. Macbook Air and Thunderbolt Display

A stunning Macbook Air and Thunderbolt Display PSD’s free for you to download by designer Jozef Mak.

mac 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

35. Greyscalegorilla 3D Tutorials

Met this guy while we both were a speaker at OFFF 2010 – he’s a friendly and talented artist. His site is an inspiration for many 3D artists and full of wonderful tutorials.

greyscalegorilla 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

36. Vray Materials

If you need free quality Vray materials for for example Cinema 4D, this is the site to go to.

vray materials 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

37. Blendme

This extension for Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator searches thousands of assets, including popular icon packs, without having you to leave Photoshop or Illustrator.

blendme 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

38. AdobeKnowHow

Recently launched by Adobe, this site provides you free beginner courses for several Adobe programs.

adobe 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

39. Tuts+

A great site offering you free tutorials for several programs for you to learn. For beginners, but also for the professionals. You can never know enough.

tut  730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

40. Pixeden

Pixeden is a site not to be missed in this list and provides you a great collection of ‘freebies’ from mock ups, templates to text effects.

pixeden 730x438 40 free resources every designer should know

If I missed your favorites, please share them in the comments below!

Source: http://thenextweb.com/dd/2014/12/21/40-free-resources-every-designers-know

CWC To Invest US$400m In Broadband Expansion

Is this a scheme to butter up the policy makers? 

Published: Sunday | December 14, 2014

Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC) and Columbus International Inc are rolling out new plans for customer and broadband services even while still awaiting regulatory approval for their planned merger.

In a release on Friday, the companies promised a “low-price broadband package” on which it will be spending US$400 million.

CWC, which trades as LIME, is acquiring 100 per cent of Columbus, the owners of triple-play company Flow, for US$3.025 billion, inclusive of about US$1.2 billion of debt. The operations of both companies are to merge.

CWC’s CEO, Phil Bentley, said in Friday’s press release that the merger would result in “the most extensive fibre infrastructure ever constructed in the region, providing wider access to all, specifically targeting low-income households.

“We will ensure that all our customers have affordable access, while also providing industry leading 1 gigabyte-per-second broadband speeds for those customers who want an unparalleled online experience,” he said.

The company said that 500 skilled jobs in the region would emerge over five years as the larger company expands its services. It also declared its support for net neutrality and number portability, which regional regulators have shown eagerness to implement.

Number portability will allow customers to retain their current phone numbers while switching networks.


“We are keen to facilitate consumer choice – it’s our customers who define service excellence – and the freedom to access OTT services and to port mobile or fixed-line telephone numbers is a key element of our strategy,” Bentley said.

OTT, or over-the-top services, include the contentious VoIP Internet calling services that regional telecoms have been attempting to block since mid-year. Digicel Group has been the most aggressive at fighting the incursion of unlicensed VoIP providers.

CWC said it would introduce ‘no-contract’ service offering, giving customers the ability to switch their landline, video, and broadband subscriptions at any time to any provider.

Earlier last week, the company also announced plans to launch a series of special ‘customer panels’ in 14 markets throughout the region, described as an organised platform to allow clients to “voice their concerns, share their opinions and express their service expectations”.

The panels are expected to provide the two companies with an opportunity to gain first-hand feedback to aid in the development of a new, consolidated strategy built around their customers’ appeals.

The telecom has launched its customer-friendly initiatives to get out in front of concerns that the CWC-Columbus merger would limit customer choice and dampen competition.


Source: http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20141214/business/business2.html