Archive for December 2010
Thanks to Apple’s iPad, 2010 was the year of the tablet. The 9.7-inch touchscreen wonder created a brand-new product category that made digital content more attractive than ever.
The iPad checked off all the boxes where previous tablet computers completely missed the mark. Unlike its stylus-driven predecessors, the iPad offers a finger-friendly interface that people of all ages can learn in a few seconds, requiring zero antivirus software and barely any maintenance (apps update themselves with the tap of a button). In other words, it was the first true tablet — not just a PC with a touchscreen skin.
The market reacted strongly. Publishers lined up to reinvent their magazines and newspapers for the shiny device, programmers embraced another new digital frontier to make innovative apps and games, and several competing manufacturers announced plans to whip up tablets of their own.
More controversially, the iPad extended Apple’s dominion over its phenomenal media distribution channel, the App Store, for better and for worse. The tablet’s beautiful 9.7-inch screen opens new possibilities for content creators to make money by selling apps through the App Store, but every so often Apple cracks the whip, demanding programmers to follow the company’s vaguely stated but stringently applied rules. In short, the iPad unlocked an exciting opportunity for digital innovation, while also posing an alarming threat to creative freedom.
Nonetheless, the early numbers suggest customers are thrilled. Apple sold 4.2 million iPads during the tablet’s first quarter of existence, claiming the title of fastest-adopted gadget in history.
So we just gave 3.0 a spin, calling iPhone-to-iPhone (both WiFi), iPhone-to-desktop (both WiFi), and again iPhone-to-iPhone (both 3G). The first two worked great, although the desktop camera produced better quality. As for the worst-case scenario, 3G-to-3G video calling we wouldn’t recommend it unless absolutely necessary. Video after the break, and be sure to note the battery life — after about 10 minutes of use, we dropped from 66 percent to 61.
A bomb hidden on a parked motorcycle exploded outside two court buildings in central Athens on Thursday, damaging cars and shattering windows but leaving no one hurt.
The powerful rush-hour blast occurred at 08:20 (06:20 GMT) following a warning telephone call to a newspaper and private TV station. The blast occurred in a densely populated area in the city’s Ambelokipi district, shattering windows and nearby shop storefronts, and destroying cars. It sent up a cloud of smoke that was visible across the city. Police had evacuated the targeted buildings, which are used for administrative purposes. State health officials confirmed that no one was injured.
The issue is witnessed to fetch heat, primarily because over 30 % of seafood consumed by Americans comes from the Gulf of Mexico and is still consumed.
New Orleans environmental and Gulf oil attorney Stuart Smith is reported to have contracted the government claims that Gulf seafood is safe to consume.
The former claims that the oil spill has made the seafood unfit and detrimental to public health. In addition, it has backed its claims with the help of robust testing using state-of-the-art laboratory analysis, toxicologists, chemists and marine biologists retained by Smith’s firm.
“What we have found is that FDA simply overlooked an important aspect of safety in their protocol. We now have a sufficient number of samples to provide FDA with probable cause to include such testing, really. They need to go back and test some of their archived samples as well”, outlined William Sawyer, a toxicologist on Smith’s team.
It is reported that a spate of health issues have been reported by Gulf residents because of a direct exposure to hydrocarbons and the dispersants applied by BP.
However, FDA’s sister agency, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) have extended a huge support to it.
Hundreds of herbal medicinal remedies and products will be banned from 1 may 2011 under European law
Posted December 30, 2010on:
Hundreds of herbal medicinal products will be banned from sale in Britain next year under what campaigners say is a “discriminatory and disproportionate” European law.
With four months to go before the EU-wide ban is implemented, thousands of patients face the loss of herbal remedies that have been used in the UK for decades.
From 1 May 2011, traditional herbal medicinal products must be licensed or prescribed by a registered herbal practitioner to comply with an EU directive passed in 2004. The directive was introduced in response to rising concern over adverse effects caused by herbal medicines.
The UK Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has issued more than a dozen safety alerts in the past two years, including one over aristolochia, a banned toxic plant derivative which caused kidney failure in two women.
Herbal practitioners say it is impossible for most herbal medicines to meet the licensing requirements for safety and quality, which are intended to be similar to those for pharmaceutical drugs, because of the cost of testing.
According to the Alliance for Natural Health (ANH), which represents herbal practitioners, not a single product used in traditional Chinese medicine or ayurvedic medicine has been licensed. In Europe, around 200 products from 27 plant species(Ex: garlic or mint)have been licensed but there are 300 plant species in use in the UK alone.
The ANH estimates the cost of obtaining a licence at between £80,000 and £120,000 per herb. They say this is affordable for single herbal products with big markets, such as echinacea, a remedy for colds and flu, but will drive small producers of medicines containing multiple herbs out of business.
Under EU law, statutorily regulated herbal practitioners will be permitted to continue prescribing unlicensed products. But the Coalition Government and the previous Labour administration have delayed plans to introduce a statutory herbal practitioner register.
This means thousands of patients who rely on herbal treatments face being denied access to them. Medical organisations, including the MHRA, have warned the measures may drive patients to obtain herbal medicines over the internet – where risks are much greater.