Uber CEO Faces Lawsuit Price Fixing Allegations

Uber is a popular app that allows people to act almost like taxi’s for others, with one person pressing a button to request a ride and minutes later a driver arriving to provide the transport at a cost. With the concept of pricing, a key part of the system, Uber’s CEO Travis Kalanick may want to be careful as he faces a lawsuit of price fixing allegations relating to the app.

Uber is no stranger to legal troubles, with people in Jakarta staging violent protests over the app and one driver even claiming that a demon convinced him through the app to commit murder, the app has seen its fair time in the spotlight for legal issues. During the recent Metro shutdown in New York Uber decided that it wouldn’t raise prices to more than 3.9 times their normal rate, a kind gesture that could certainly see people put off using the service. A US District court judge in New York has stated that Kalanick must face

A US District court judge, Jed Rakoff, in New York has stated that Kalanick must face the lawsuit that states he conspired with drivers to set the fares the app provides using an algorithm, including its well-known progress of increasing rates during peak hours through its “surge pricing” model.

In his comments, Rakoff states that the plaintiffs had “plausibly alleged a conspiracy” which ultimately drove out rivals for the app. It will be interesting to see how a company as well known as Uber faces charges over something some would call a “feature” within their software while others would claim it takes money from those desperate in times of need, such as those escaping from attacks or when other transport systems are shut down.

Seagate Sends Employees’ Payroll Information After Phishing Scam

Seagate is known for many things, but most of all they are known for their hard drives. I would recommend you look elsewhere if you are looking for something a little more secure I would say avoid them for now as it’s been revealed that employees’ payroll information was sent out after a phishing scam.

Phishing is the act of pretending to be someone else, asking for details (normally bank details or contact information) in order to gain access to information you normally couldn’t. From Nigerian Princes to Sergeant in the Army, they use anyone to obtain information. This time, the email claimed to be from Seagate’s CEO Stephen Luczo requesting data about current and former Seagate employees.

Believing the email to be genuine, the employee responded with the W-2 (Wage and Tax statement) documents. With the scope currently set at “several thousand” employees, the company has been working with federal law enforcement agencies since the incident on the 1st March. To help support their employees, two years of credit protection has been provided on the off chance that their data is used.

With most details of this nature being used in returning fraudulent tax returns with the IRS (something which is made all that much easier by being hacked recently), it could cost the government thousands if they don’t catch the culprits involved.

Bitter Former CEO Steve Ballmer Calls Microsoft Profits Bull****

Steve Ballmer loves having a pop at his old company. The former Microsoft CEO – but still a majority shareholder – takes any opportunity to put the boot into his successor, Satya Nadella, as he did recently when dismissing the company’s aim to create a new generation of universal apps that run on phones, tablets, and computers alike.

Now, at a shareholder’s meeting on Wednesday, Ballmer lost his temper with Nadella, shouting that Microsoft’s key strategy “won’t work” and calling its financial reporting “bull****,” according to Bloomberg.

“They should report the revenue, not the run rate,” Ballmer said during the meeting, calling the use of the run rate to supposedly obfuscate the real figures “bull****.”

Microsoft refused to rise to Ballmer’s inflammatory posturing, with Chris Suh, General Manager for Investor Relations for Microsoft, saying, “We enjoy a regular dialogue with Steve, and welcome his input and feedback, as we do from our other investors.” said.

Ballmer seems bitter that the company he left flailing after an unsuccessful 12 months at the helm is thriving without him – Windows 10 is the company’s most successful operating system yet – and resents Nadella for changing the strategies he put in place, such as his plans for the Windows Phone.

But even when he’s happy, he does love a good shout, that Ballmer…

Image courtesy of Computer World.

TalkTalk Boss Argues ‘Customers Think We’re Doing Right Thing After Attack’

The TalkTalk cyberattack raised serious security questions about the company’s ability to properly encrypt sensitive customer information. Despite the negative publicity and widespread outrage, TalkTalk chief executive Dido Harding claims the:

 “majority of customers support our approach”. 

She also eluded that: 

“Very early indications that customers think that we’re doing the right thing”.

“The cyber attack, while not wishing to diminish it, has been smaller than we thought,”

However, the response on Twitter is quite hostile and clearly shows how frustrated customers are:

https://twitter.com/HarringtonC0/status/664130728263839744

To be fair, Twitter isn’t the most accurate basis of judging mass opinion and usually revolves around the angry minority. However, in this case, I think TalkTalk’s arrogant management really is underestimating the scale of this problem and how damaging it’s been from a PR perspective. Harding weighed in on the company’s future and said the ISP is:

 “very confident in the medium term future of TalkTalk”.

“Yesterday’s security might have been good enough but it’s not going to be good enough tomorrow,”

“I expect we will take security considerably more seriously than ever.”

I honestly think customers are struggling to take these promises seriously and there’s a great deal of apprehension regarding network security. The company claims many people decided not to cancel their contract. Although, this might be because leaving their current contract leads to hefty fines. Additionally, a large quantity of TalkTalk’s audience doesn’t feel comfortable switching providers and needs to assistance of someone technically minded. Whatever the case, the cyberattack has dramatically altered people’s perceptions towards TalkTalk and I can’t see that changing anytime soon.

Tim Cook Describes Microsoft’s Surface Book as ‘Deluded’

Apple’s CEO, Tim Cook appears to be on the warpath of late and becoming quite outspoken about the PC platform and Microsoft’s hardware endeavors. Only yesterday, he described PCs as ‘pointless’ and an outdated premise compared to the iPad Pro. There’s a huge sense of irony here as the term PC refers to computer hardware, and Apple’s role involves creating their own operating system for heavily restricted PCs. These remarks have made Tim Cook look extremely foolish, and I cannot understand his bizarre thought process.

Microsoft’s Surface Book is certainly one of the most impressive hardware reveals I’ve seen for some time. However, Tim Cook disagrees and made some fairly disparaging remarks about the device during an appearance at an Irish college. He criticized the product and said:

“It’s a product that tries too hard to do too much,”

“It’s trying to be a tablet and a notebook and it really succeeds at being neither. It’s sort of deluded.”

For all Apple’s posturing about their “really good” relationship with Microsoft, Tim Cook isn’t speaking on amicable terms and behaving in an appalling manner. It’s hilarious to think the iPad Pro is a different, more streamlined device than the Surface Book. If anything, the Surface Book has even more potential and I believe it’s probably the best piece of hardware Microsoft has designed. I’m not entirely sure what’s going on with Apple and Tim Cook, but it seems the company’s aggressive attitude is coming to the forefront.

Ashley Madison Ex-CTO Hacked Competing Website

Adultery website, Ashley Madison is at the forefront of a hacking scandal despite reassurances about the site’s confidentiality. The data released includes information on members, their activity and the CEO’s e-mail correspondence. In an ironic twist, leaked documents show that the CTO in collaboration with employees, and the CEO of parent company Avid Life Media, discovered a security flaw in rival site, Nerve.com.  The company accessed the competitor’s entire database and had the ability to change records for their own purpose. A snippet from the e-mail exchange provides an insight into their ruthless strategy:

“They did a very lousy job building their platform. I got their entire user base,”

“Also, I can turn any non paying user into a paying user, vice versa, compose messages between users, check unread stats, etc.”

In a hilarious twist, Raja Bhatia, the founding chief technology officer outlined the company’s own security problems before allegedly hacking a competing site:

“With what we inherited with Ashley[Madison.com], security was an obvious afterthought, and I didn’t focus on it either,”

“I am pretty sure we stored passwords without any cryptography so a database leak would expose all account credentials.”

Ashley Madison is a very devise website, and its CEO isn’t the most lovable of characters. Furthermore, if the company conducted hacking as suggested in the e-mails, they could be prosecuted under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. Personally, I have very little sympathy for a company which promotes cheating, and supposedly engages in the behaviour it becomes outraged by.

Thank you Wired for providing us with this information. 

Seagate CEO – No One Uses SSDs for Storage

Seagate CEO Stephen J. Luczo has had some interesting choice words to say about how SSDs are used. In an earnings call to investors, Luczo noted that “no one uses SSDs for storage”. Coming from a hard drive sector that is on the decline as SSDs are ascending, those are pretty strong words.

There is truth to those words for both data centres and consumers at large. Due to the still prohibitive cost of SSDs, most consumers who have SSDs tend to only keep their OS and applications on their SSDs and store their multimedia and backups on their HDDs. The same goes for data centres where only hot data is cached to SSDs and most things are still stored to spinners.

However, hard drive shipments are on the decline as SSDs drop both in price and increase in capacity. Even Luczo, to his credit, is forced to admit a few % of users use SSDs all the way. Seagate has also tried to respond by pushing hybrid drives, their own SSDs and even buying the once great SSD controller firm Sandforce. Even if the continuing growth of cloud services might help boost hard drive use in the short term, Seagate, WD and Toshiba must either continue to grow value and capacity ahead of SSDs or face obsolescence.

Former Mt. Gox CEO Mark Karpelès Arrested Over Lost 650,000 Bitcoins

More than a year after troubled Bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox folded, authorities have finally moved against the beleaguered firm. Japanese police have arrested former CEO Mark Karpelès for his involvement in the collapse of the exchange. Leading up to the collapse, the exchange reportedly lost 750,000 Bitcoins belonging to customers as well as 100,000 held by Mt. Gox itself.

According to the Japanese police, Karpelès faces allegations that he manipulated the balance of company accounts as well as those of customers. Claims were also made that some of the missing Bitcoins may have never existed at all and that he falsified data to inflate the company’s assets. At the time, Mt. Gox blamed the loss of the Bitcoins on a bug and later hackers as well as simply losing them. Before filing for bankruptcy, the firm announced it had “found” 200,000 of the missing coins.

At the time of its closure, Mt. Gox was the biggest and most well-known Bitcoin exchange. When the coins were lost, they were worth almost $500 million, though that has since dropped to about $184 million. Karpelès denies any wrong doing at this point and blames the loss of Bitcoins on hackers and weak cyber security.

Thank you Engadget for providing us with this information 

Uber Leaders Arrested In France

Uber has been in the news a lot recently. From having accounts sold on the dark net to being banned in countries due to its drivers behaviors. All of these have been large problems for a company which relies on the public not only using their app but also providing the cars for people to use. Today it all changed as two officials in Uber’s French branch were taken into custody.

Uber France CEO Thibaud Simphal and Uber Europe GM Pierre-Dimitir Gore-Coty were taken into custody in Paris today, this follows on from a raid that took place in its Paris office back in March. The two executives were charged with different allegations, the first of which being the running of an illegal taxi operation. This is a problem they have encountered in a few countries, with some debating if Uber can be considered a taxi service and others debating if their drivers are contractors or indeed employees.

The second allegation was concealing digital documents following on from the March raid, which in turn was slowing down the investigation.

France already has a strict stance on Uber, banning UberPOP (the equivalent of Uber in France) which allowed people to sign up and become Uber drivers without professional licenses. In response to this ban police have been issuing fines, these fines would be paid for by Uber.

So after being fined and possibly having their vehicles taken away they are still willing to drive for an app which considers them “contractors” (this avoids a lot of legal implications, such as providing health insurance in certain countries). After having two of its senior members taken into custody maybe Uber will have to rethink how it does business, or maybe France will have to go one step further and ban UberPop with a Justice Court ban on the service?

Thank you Tech Crunch for the information.

Tidal CEO Today Gone Tomorrow

Upheaval continues as the new kid on the streaming block, Tidal have announced their interim CEO, Peter Tonstad has left the company. Although by labeling your new CEO who only joined in April 2015 “interim” it does not give you much confidence of staying with the company either,

Tidal released a statement to the Wall Street Journal, before I go on; I bet you’re wondering why I have used a source which differs from the original source? I do have a valid reason; see the Wall Street Journal is owned by News Corporation which is then owned by the dark lord himself, no not Peter Mandelson, Rupert Murdoch.  Who in turn has made news sites, which he owns, for example the Wall Street Journal subscription based, nothing wrong with that, it’s just I don’t particularly want to pay for two-thirds of a story which I can find somewhere else for free.

Where was I? Oh yes Tidal released a statement to state “We are thankful to Peter for stepping in as interim CEO and wish him the best for the future,” Tidal which is owned by Beats creator Dr Dre, purchased Tidal for $56 million in March. Since then the aspiring Spotify killer has garnered 770,000 paying subscribers, this compares to Spotify’s 20 million subscribers. While relating both market shares it’s important to take into consideration Tidal has only been operating since 2014, while Spotify has been streaming music since 2008. Spotify also has a free option while Tidal only has a free trial, these factors contribute in an extremely slow start for Tidal.

I also think Tidal is banking on a higher quality music sound which is combined with an ownership structure which places artists in the driving seat. The problem is how many consumers can tell the difference between Tidal’s music qualities and say for example YouTube, Deezer or Spotify. True connoisseurs of music will tell instantly while casual fans will not, if Tidal is to gain a bigger market share, it will need to be a bit more open to fans instead of marketing itself as the millionaires music elite.

Thank You ABC News for providing us with this information

Image courtesy of A Gambiarra

Snoop Dog Wants to Be Twitter’s Next CEO

Snoop Dog for Twitter’s next CEO? That’s the latest story that got our attention roaming around Twitter. We’ve seen a lot of supporters for his campaign using the hashtag ‘#ifSnoopWasTwitterCEO’ and it even got the attention of actor Orlando Jones, who also supports Snoop’s campaign.

It has been reported that the actual CEO of Twitter, Dick Costolo, is stepping down as CEO. Jack Dorsey is going to be appointed Interim CEO as of the 1st of July and the company is now looking for a suitable CEO. But why Snoop Dog as the next Twitter CEO? Well, TechCrunch has a good idea here.

Costolo helped Twitter go from a net value of $3 billion to $26 billion and from 30 million active users to 250 million. He basically shaped the company in the social media giant it is today. Compare that to Snoop’s success and you get the same pattern.

Snoop Dog has always followed the same business strategy found in big tech companies today. He defied what others were saying (like companies defy Wall Street), he knew who his real friends were and most importantly, he knows that winning is not the most important thing for success. This is why the old saying ‘if it’s not broken, don’t try to fix it’ does not apply to both Snoop and tech companies.

The same success as Twitter had can be seen in Snoop’s personal life too. His 20 years of success in music, movies and business add a lot of potential and credibility, so we won’t really rule out the actual possibility of him ending up on the CEO chair. But what are your opinions on this story? Would you like to see Snoop Dog as the next Twitter CEO? Give us your opinion in the comments below.

Thank you Examiner, Inquisitr and TechCrunch for providing us with this information

Image courtesy of 4Music

Facebook Could Be Hosting News Articles as Soon as Tomorrow

Facebook’s plan of self-hosted editorial content or “Instant Articles” could be going live as soon as tomorrow. The Instant Articles will have articles from The New York Times, Buzzfeed, National Geographic, and NBC News.

New York Magazine is reporting that the new feature will be going live tomorrow morning. What has apparently held up the start of the new feature is the New York Times CEO pushing for “the most favorable terms”. This is due to them having more than a million paid digital subscribers and the fact that the Facebook articles will be free to read. The worked out terms allows those publishing articles to keep 100% of the ad money (next to their article) if they sell the ad. If Facebook sells the ad they will be able to keep 70% of the money. This should help the publishers that are concerned about the bottom line when their articles will be accessible for free to the population of Facebook. We will see if the news articles, in fact go live tomorrow morning. If they do not at least we know that it will be very soon now that the compensation details have been worked out with the companies that will be providing the news articles.

Thank you Engadget for providing us with this information.

New eSports Betting Site Unikrn Launches

Over the last few years, we have seen the rise of esports with it taking shape of what should become a massive industry. Now the veil has been lifted on Unikrn, a platform to facilitate spectator betting on esports around the world.

There are now many ways to bet online for various sports but there hasn’t been a great platform for betting on esports, like League of Legends. Today that will change for Australian citizens and soon for other countries regions around the world thanks to Unikrn. The company will be the esports partner of Tabcorp, the large Australian wagering company.  This may explain why the bets are first being accepted in Australia. The betting will be legal and will only accept bets placed from locations that it is legal to do so. Having the foot in the door with other countries and areas will definitely help the site as they aim to become the leader in esports betting.

Unikrn CEO and co-founder is Rahul Sood, longtime computer gaming industry veteran. Rahul was founder and president of Voodoo PC, CTO for HP Gaming after the company acquired Voodoo PC, advisor to the board of directors of Razer, and left his position as global head of Microsoft Ventures to start Unikrn. The company name seemingly is a nod to Rahul’s previous job, with unicorns being startups that hit a billion dollar valuation in fundraising.

Musk: New Tesla Product Line to Be Unveiled on April 30th

Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla took to Twitter today to say that the car company will be unveiling its new product line. The new product line will not be a car and will unveil the new line at its Hawthorne Design Studio on Thursday April 30th, at 8pm.

That is all that was offered as a teaser, and it has many wondering if this means that it will be showing the new stationary battery pack that is designed to power an entire home. Last month Musk said that Tesla was nearing the launch of that product so this is very likely what it will end up being. Though as The Verge stated “But this is Tesla and Elon Musk we’re talking about, so the chance of a different, unforeseen surprise is always there”, something that is very true.

Source: The Verge

Jen-Hsun Huang Interviews Elon Musk of Tesla

GTC 2015: As part of the keynote at GTC 2015 after talking about some amazing feats with the new TITAN X and some of the deep learning technology on offer, we were greeted with a special interview between Jen-Hsun Huang and Tesla CEO Elon Musk.

Upon talking about autonomous vehicles, a big discussion as part of that revolved around Artificial Intelligence. Skynet anyone?

For now, you can find all of the juicy information in the video below:

Square Bringing Apple Pay to Small Businesses

We’ve recently reported on Apple Pay coming to your mobile phone through their technology advancements, now news has come to light that a credit card processing service for small firms called Square is looking to bring it to the wider audience. The original list of participating Apple Pay stores was completely dominated by big names, leaving the small fish in some hot water.

In basic terms, Square is described as a mobile credit-card reader that allows a small business to process payments without needing a terminal. Originally seen as a competitor to Apple Pay, Square’s founder Jack Dorsey has publicly stated that his companies service is designed to function as  “a [cash] register, and this register accepts all these forms of payments”, not a competitor to Apple’s newly announced technology. Adding to this, he is planning to integrate Apple Pay compatibility into his existing model with development said to commence in 2015.

CNN reported that this change will require a hardware update into Square’s existing technology, which currently serves as a module that plugs into smartphones. However, we’ve come to learn that most smartphones with NFC capabilities will quite possibly allow Square’s Apple Pay integration to work flawlessly without touching any hardware upgrades. If you’re a small business and are planning to use Apple pay, it’s about time you grabbed yourself a Nexus 5 or later model phone.

This is some good news for small business owners for sure, once again opening up another portal for their customers to pay with ease. We’re waiting with baited breath to see if, when and how Apple Pay takes off in the mainstream market.

Image courtesy of Engadget

Razer CEO Warns of Fake Nabu eBay offerings

As announced on his Public Facebook page yesterday, Razer CEO Min-Liang Tan warns of fake Razer Nabu smart bands becoming available on eBay.

His official statement reads:

I’ve been informed that there have been eBay, Craigslist, etc listings of the Razer Nabu and some of the prices listed have the Nabu for over US$400 or more with many customers already pre-ordering the unit at that price.

We have NOT shipped any Nabus to third parties at this time and that we strongly advise against purchasing at any unauthorized third party resellers.

Further – the retail price at the start will be under US$100 – and although you will definitely find scalpers that will resell the launch units for much higher prices (as with any Razer product that we launch) – we highly discourage you from purchasing from them. We know of companies that specialize in buying up Razer products at to resell them for a huge profit at launch and we’re doing everything we can to ensure this doesn’t happen at the detriment of our customers.

The launch units will be exclusively for our Insider members with mass availability to follow after.

If you’re keen to be the first few to get your hands on the Nabu, do check out Insider here at: http://insider.razerzone.com/

PS: Do share this if you can – I’d hate to have anyone scammed because they want to get a Nabu. As with all Razer products – demand always far outstrips the supply but we’ll do whatever we can to keep up with the production for demand.

Please feel free to share this article or click the link above to directly share this status to your friends and family. Although, if you’re going to fall for a triple-priced pre-release offering – maybe you deserve it? We’ve been reporting on Razer’s Nabu offering for a while now, waiting for a release with baited breath. We’ve seen Android app updates be released alongside copious amounts of product information, so please Razer if you’re reading this, stop teasing and give it to us already!

Image courtesy of Facebook

CEO of Reddit Resigns, Cites Office Space Problems

Reddit is going through a big shake up, with its CEO leaving the company and with the return of co-founder Alexis Ohanian. Ohanian left the company in 2010, will return as Executive Chairman, while Ellen Pao will become the interim CEO. Now former CEO Yishan Wong apparently left the company after a dispute over a new office. That’s some reason to quit your job as CEO.

Source: The Next Web

[Update] Spotify has Paid $2B to Artists, Taylor Swift Would Have Made $6M

The music industry was in the spotlight earlier this month when Taylor Swift pulled her hot new album release from Spotify’s digital streaming service. Claims were made from Taylor and her record label that the artists weren’t getting a big enough payout from having their music available on the service, but today Spotify’s CEO Daniel Ek has hit back. Mr Ek announced that the company has now paid out over $2 billion in royalties to the music industry – which includes record labels and artists and their encompassing surrounds.

Mr Ek also made mention that the services userbase isn’t slowing down either – making note that the first billion dollars of payments came spanning the years of 2008-2013, whereas the second billion was paid just over the last 12 months. Another incredible figure that Mr Ek noted was that Spotify has more paid subscribers than all of it’s music streaming competitors combined.

“[Taylor Swift] is the only artist who has sold more than a million copies in an album’s first week since 2002. In the old days, multiple artists sold multiple millions every year. That just doesn’t happen any more; people’s listening habits have changed – and they’re not going to change back.”

The CEO also went on to exclaim that because Swift had pulled her entire catalogue from the service, she is set to lose over $6M is profits in the short term from not being on Spotify’s streaming service. At the end of the day, it would seem that Swift and her management pulled her catalogue from Spotify because they’re one of the last remaining artists who wields enough power to afford to manoeuvre such a stunt. In the meantime, I’m sure many of you have other tunes and artists to listen to and enjoy.

Thanks to The Verge for providing us with this information.

YouTube Launching Streaming Music Service, Ad-free Video Subscription a Possibility

Are you ready for YouTube’s music streaming service? The cats been let out of the bag by YouTube’s CEO Susan Wojcicki during a recent interview. Wojcicki told re/code that the company had been working on the music streaming service for quite some time, but the launch of the platform won’t be ready to go by the end of the year.

A YouTube music streaming service has been a long time coming, with many rumours of the service having frequented headlines on and off for nearly two years. Originally codenamed Music Key – the project was seemingly on track, at least until public backlash was made over an internal decision at YouTube to block indie labels that didn’t wish to submit their material to the site. The outcry over the internal decision at YouTube was so immense that the then product manager at YouTube Chris LaRose stood down from his position at the company.

On top of the music streaming announcement from YouTube, Wojcicki also hinted at an ad-free video subscription service. However, the CEO kept her cards close to her chest when asked for more information regarding such a subscription model. YouTube is currently ‘thinking about how to give users options’ as to how the platform can be viewed.

For more information on YouTube’s upcoming plans – you can find the full stage interview here.

Thanks to re/code for providing us with this inforation.

Image courtesy of re/code.

Dreamhack CEO Fired, Goes Out In a Blaze of… Hatred!

Being fired from your job isn’t a pleasant experience, and while the circumstances of Dreamhack CEO Robert Ohléns departure are currently unknown, it is pretty clear that he’s unhappy about the decision.

Dreamhack is the worlds biggest LAN gaming event, attracting thousands of gamers from around the world, as well as many of the worlds leading technology companies to the shows ever-growing exhibition hall. Robert was king for this event and has been integral to its success over the years, but now it seems his time has come to an end.

Robert is clearly furious over the loss of his job and what this means for the future of the event is currently unknown, but it’s clear that there is something unpleasant brewing at Dreamhack HQ. Current rumours are suggesting it is down to poor administration and organization of tournaments, something which has recently led to much dispute in the DOTA2 eSports community.

Here is Robert’s last tweet after the news broke of his departure. It doesn’t take much imagination to interpret his mood over the situation.

I’m not here to gloat at his misery, we wish you all the best in your future endeavours Robert. Hopefully, we’ll have a greater understand of what happened as well as what effect this may have on future Dreamhack events.

Thank you Reddit for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of Twitter.

AMD CEO Claims “We do not Live in the Shadow of Intel”

The battle will be raging until the end of time, Intel vs AMD, who’s better? Who’s faster? Who’s more affordable?

Recently, AMD CEO Rory Read announced that his chief operating officer, Lisa Su, would become the new top dog – effective immediately. In one of her first statements, she made it clear that AMD will not live in the shadows of its competitor – Intel. Lisa marks the first female CEO of this kind in the industry and has been given the task of taking on the transformation of AMD through three clearly announced points. Being described as a ‘straight shooter’, Lisa described simply the new direction for AMD.

The first and highest priority is to produce great products, IP, technologies, system software platforms and customer relations. Her first tasks as the CEO will be to oversee the new AMD releases of K11 and K12 chips, the Seattle ARM server series and the Radeon 20nm graphics series, will they live up to these expectations?

This is followed by improved customer satisfaction. Lisa claims there will be 50 billion connected devices by the year 2020 and AMD wants a large market share. They plan to do a lot of this through their company partnerships which currently boast big-name companies such as HP, Lenovo, Acer, Dell and Apple.

Lastly she’s made it clear that AMD needs to release its products on time, focusing on simple, fast and decisive qualities. As we said before, Lisa doesn’t mess around – she’s made it clear that she’s got high expectations of her company’s future and she’s envisioned AMD as a world leading company in the years to come.

Is this a solid push in the right direction that AMD needs, or is this a front that they’re putting up to draw attention to their brand? Either way, we’re excited to see what Lisa and her staff can accomplish in 2014 and beyond.

What is your preferred platform and why? Most of all, what do you use your platform for?

Image courtesy of Silicon Valley Business Journal

Oracle Co-Founder Larry Ellison Steps Down as CEO

Oracle’s co-founder Larry Ellison announced in a company press release today that he would be stepping down from his position as CEO. Two replacements will fill the position, with long-standing co-presidents Mark Hurd and Safra Catz taking the top spot. Hurd will be heading primarily sales, marking and strategy, and Catz will be working on finance and manufacturing as well as legal departments.

The co-founder informed the company that he didn’t plan to retire or step away from his work at Oracle – instead Ellison has been elected to the position of chairman of Oracle’s board. What does this all mean? Ellison will be returning to a more ‘roots based position’ of work and influence within the company – and will be heading development, product engineering and strategy. Ellison’s shift sees him replacing Jeff Henley, who had been serving as chairman for the past decade – Ellison will still be working full time at the company.

Oracle’s board is said to be excited about the reshuffle – and is thrilled that their outstanding executive team will continue to thrive and move the company forward for the future to come. Ellis has not only been an exceptional businessman – seeing Oracle grow into a market capitalisation of $185 billion – but is considered a legendary figure within Silicon Valley for his innovative and progressive work.

Image courtesy of Oracle.

QNAP CEO Richard Lee Praised as NAS Industry Visionary

QNAP Systems, Inc. CEO, Richard Lee, in a recent interview with Japan’s AKIBA PC Hotline website, was praised for his aggressiveness, passion, and determination in shaping the future of the Network-attached Storage (NAS) market. The interview, which covered QNAP’s history and current developments, strongly impressed AKIBA PC Hotline, who likened Mr. Lee to the “Steve Jobs of Taiwan.”

“QNAP aims to make the almighty NAS a product born from Asian innovation,” said Richard Lee, CEO of QNAP. With its experienced hardware background and strong technology base, QNAP has moved on from exclusively targeting the business NAS market and has now become a leader in SMB and consumer sectors. “Considering the functionality and manageability that matters to general users, QNAP launched the QTS firmware in 2013, providing an easy-to-use and intuitive web-based operating system for every user regardless of IT training or knowledge,” added Lee.

When asked about the future of NAS, Richard Lee shared his vision without hesitation: “The future of NAS is software. It must be multi-window, multi-tasking with remote access from PC and smartphones. Another key element is having multiple applications. Similar to iOS and Android, the QTS App Centre now consists of over 120 install-on-demand applications that extend the functionalities of QNAP Turbo NAS even further,” added Richard Lee.

As the concept of Internet of Things (IoT) becomes more popular, QNAP also leverages its abundant applications provided by the Turbo NAS to build an IoT development centre. “For example, by storing data such as heart rates and calorie counters recorded by wearables on their NAS, users can analyse this data with apps downloaded from App Centre to manage their health better,” said Richard Lee.

During the interview, Richard Lee also shared the latest QNAP products and industry trends. For the full interview (Japanese only), please visit AKIBA PC Hotline.

Thank you QNAP for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of QNAP.

New Microsoft CEO Announced, Satya Nadella To Steer The Wheel

Microsoft officially announced the company’s new CEO, Steve Ballmer’s successor, after a long-awaited selection period. Satya Nadella, former Microsoft VP of Cloud and Enterprise group, joined Microsoft in 1992, having a pretty interesting background.

Mr. Nadella, age 46, was born in India and studied electrical engineering at the Mangalore University. He the moved to the US where he studied a master’s degree in Computer Science at the University of Winsconsin, followed by a Business Administration degree at the University of Chicago. A former Sun Microsystems employee, he joined Microsoft and worked on the Windows NT operating system, having been familiar with UNIX 32-bit systems at his former working place.

His career at Microsoft continued to advance, becoming VP of R&D for the Online Services Divisions, vice president of the Microsoft Business Division and most recently as president of Microsoft’s Server and Tools Business where he led a transformation and major shift to cloud infrastructure and services. Nadella is now the third Microsoft CEO, having Bill Gates stepping down as chairman and becoming a technical advisor. His place is now effectively taken by John Thompson, who was heading Microsoft’s CEO search committee.

Microsoft has been receiving customer criticism for a long time due to their slow evolution of its Windows and Office products. On the other hand, Microsoft continues to take the lead in the PC market, where most of its profits come from, as well as having the entertainment sphere, Xbox, and the cloud division as a profit maker as well. Mobile products such as Windows Mobile and handsets running the OS or web products such as Bing search engine have been long-shots for Microsoft, as other brands and companies were there first to take the crowd away.

Thank you Tech Spot for providing us with this information
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Alan Mulally Won’t Be Next Microsoft CEO, Market Cap Drops $12B

Many Microsoft investors have dumped their stocks after it was revealed that the current Ford President and CEO Alan Mulally will not be joining the company as their next CEO. Edsel Ford II stated that Alan would be staying with his current position through to the end of 2014, putting Alan well outside the current 12 month range that the current Microsoft CEO has proposed to find a replacement.

The news say Microsoft taking a 3.5% hit, loosing them $1.43 per share. or to sum that up for you, Microsoft just lost $12 billion worth of value over night, leaving them at a value of $38.94 per share. The company is hardly about to go bust of course, this is just the usual ups and downs for a company of this size, but it shows just how eager the world is to learn who will take the big seat.

Let’s keep in mind that this is just based on Edsel Ford II’s statement, Alan Mulally could still be in the running, although it does seem unlikely now. Now it looks like Microsofts own Satya Nadella is the front running candidate.

Thank you TechCrunch for providing us with this information.