Saturday, January 8, 2011
>>Google has apparently given priority to Motorola, Samsung Electronics and HTC for cooperation to develop tablet PCs that will run on Android 3.0 Honeycomb, according to industry sources.
Cape Fear Valley Health System, Fayetteville, NC
Due to arrive in Spring 2011, Cape Fear Valley's new CyberKnife will herald a new era in surgical precision for the health system. CyberKnife is a noninvasive, robotic surgery system used to treat both cancerous and noncancerous tumors anywhere in the body, including the brain, prostate, kidneys and liver.
The system delivers precise beams of high-dose radiation to tumors digitally mapped inside the body. No cutting or traditional surgery is required.
Planning for the CyberKnife has taken four years. When it arrives, it will be housed in the new Cancer Treatment and CyberKnife Center, adjacent to Cape Fear Valley Cancer Center, near the intersection of Owen Drive and Melrose Road.
Fir Tree Value is the beneficial owner of 4,152,710 shares of Common Stock consisting of 1,152,710 shares of Common Stock and American-style call options exercisable to purchase 3,000,000 shares of Common Stock.
Fir Tree Partners L.P. is a privately owned hedge fund sponsor. The firm invests in the public equity markets of the United States. It primarily invests in value stocks.
The Company is not new to the sector:
Equity-For-Debt Exchange Agreement - Exodus Communications Inc. and Fir Tree(Aug 22, 2001)
1. Fir Tree wishes to exchange a total of
$7,500,000 principal amount of Company's 11.625% senior notes due
$6,000,000 principal amount of Company's 11.25% senior notes due 7/1/08,
$17,000,000 principal amount of Company's 10.75% senior notes due
$56,000,000 principal amount of Company's 4.75% subordinated convertible
notes due 7/15/08, and
$15,500,000 principal amount of Company's 5.25% subordinated convertible
notes due 2/15/08 (collectively, the "Bonds").
2. Fir Tree and the Company have agreed that it is in their mutual interest to
exchange the Bonds for shares of the common stock of the Company.
3. In consideration of the premises and the agreements and representations
contained herein, the parties hereto agree as follows:
A. Bond Exchange.
On the Effective Date, Fir Tree will transfer and deliver the Bonds to Company
and Company will deliver 18,637,096 shares of its common stock (the "Shares")
to Fir Tree in exchange for the Bonds plus all claims arising out of or relating
to the Bonds, including but not limited to any accrued but unpaid interest
Friday, January 7, 2011
>>Sony Corp. plans to introduce a tablet computer that will take on Apple Inc.’s iPad as the Japanese company aims to win second position in the market for the devices next year, Yoshiko Furusawa, a spokeswoman, said.
>>LAS VEGAS, Jan 6 (Reuters) - South Korea's LG Electronics Inc (066570.KS) aims to more than quadruple smartphone shipments this year and will focus on expanding premium products to catch up with bigger rivals, an executive said on Thursday.
"It'll be difficult to make a quick turnaround due to legacy products and higher marketing spending," Ma Chang-min, vice president and head of marketing for LG's mobile communications, told Reuters in an interview at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
"But we are now better prepared for competition as our products such as Optimus One have gained some traction in the market and our focus in 2011 will be expanding premium product offerings."
Ma said LG sold around 7 million smartphones last year and aimed to increase the volume to 30 million units this year.
>>Samsung posted the most growth of any smartphone maker in the third quarter of 2010, said researcher IDC, claiming 8.9% of the market, up from 3.0% a year earlier. Overall, Samsung is the world's fourth-largest smartphone maker, trailing Nokia Corp., Apple Inc. and BlackBerry maker Research in Motion Ltd., according to IDC.
At this week's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, the producer of everything from chips to cellphone screens to tablets is rolling out new 4G smartphones that are featuring prominently in the lineups of Verizon Wireless and AT&T Inc., the two largest U.S. carriers. Next month, the South Korean company is going to announce a new slate of tablets of different sizes at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.
Thursday, January 6, 2011
>>Thanks to a handful of emerging technologies, virtual touch-screen keyboards are getting closer to the feel of real electromechanical keyboards. Enhancements such as tactile feedback and surfaces that change to mimic physical keys could eventually redefine the virtual keyboard experience for millions of users of devices ranging from smartphones to tablets and touch-screen PCs. Will these improvements be enough for the virtual keyboard to entirely displace the electromechanical keyboard?
Immersion Corp., which has developed a product that uses a mechanical actuator to deliver haptic feedback on a touch screen, says the next generation of haptics will be able to replicate the feel of key travel as well as the keyboard click of a mechanical keyboard. "You don't get the actual travel of your finger, but you can get much more of it back," says Dennis Sheehan, Immersion's vice president of marketing.
Immersion is working on an innovation that could help. The company is collaborating with partners to develop "deformable surfaces" that would allow certain areas of the touch screen to rise up, creating key positions you can feel.
"When electric fields are applied to them, they deform -- raise up or sink down. Those surfaces would be on top of the touch-screen display," says Sheehan, so this could help users position their fingers by feel. But don't expect products anytime soon: Sheehan describes the work as part of the company's "long-range vision."
Honeycomb tablets would be a big deal here at CES, but one thing we didn't expect was for Samsung's Android Froyo-based Galaxy Tab to get a little spec bump already just a few short months after release. This one is strictly a Verizon special, stuffing in an LTE modem (while maintaining backward compatibility with Big Red's 3G network), adding another 200MHz to the Hummingbird processor for a grand total of 1.2GHz, and moving the rear camera from 3 megapixels to 5.
>>We all know that we live in a world where hedge funds pay a lot of money for research and then even more in sales and trading commissions to large banks. It is not uncommon for hedge funds to exercise their influence over analysts and persuade them to present their thesis in a new piece of coverage. However, there was no smoking gun cited by UBS to account for the massive downward revisions of DLR and DFT. Hence, in my opinion, hedge fund ‘thesis pushing’ is the most credible explanation for the awkward call. It was quite unfortunate timing for the UBS analyst that the Goldman note preceded his call by 24 hours as it simply further exposed his hand. The fact that this happened on quad option witching Friday, where the most damage could be inflicted, only adds credibility to the macabre conspiracy theory. Well, if you buy the conspiracy theory that UBS may have been convinced by certain short funds to revise their ratings on DLR and DFT, and then UBS accidentally released the report on quad witching Friday.
The only conclusion can be that the shorts, lacking anything concrete, are desperate and throwing the kitchen sink at these stocks in an attempt to cover their positions before the earnings calls. Christmas trading was very light, and in the case of DFT, this leaves the shorts a little over one month to cover 13M shares, not a great prospect on a stock with a volume between 650k-800k per day. So if you’d like to start the New Year with a squeeze, this pair looks as good as any.
NXT’s Haptic Tactile Feedback Module Simultaneously Creates Touch Sensation and Sound on Flat Panels
CAMBRIDGE, England--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- NXT plc has announced a 15mm x 10mm control module that, in combination with two 0.5W moving coil transducers, adds haptic touch to a flat panel whilst simultaneously turning the panel into a loudspeaker. The module is designed primarily for applications in white goods, security systems, home automation and industrial control.
The haptic effect makes a touch panel feel like a mechanical keypad or keyboard. The NXT HCM-1 module controls the transducers, which generate bending waves across the surface of the panel, creating the sensation of pressing a mechanical key when a user touches it. The touch panel also acts as a flat-panel speaker, using the same drive module and transducers. The speaker can be used to provide additional confirmation of a positive touch on the panel or audible confirmation of other circuit functions being activated. It can also be used to deliver voice feed prompts, advertising messages, or entertainment.
The use of two transducers results in even dispersion of signal strength across the whole touch panel.
NXT will develop additional control modules for displays, multi-touch feedback and alternative transducer types. Higher power versions for large displays are also planned.
NXT CEO, James Lewis, said: “Touch technology has replaced conventional switches and keys in many applications because it reduces cost while delivering a better user experience and higher reliability. Panels are wipe-clean and it’s easy to seal them against the ingress of contaminant. This new module enables product manufacturers to quickly and easily implement the latest advance in touch technology. Haptic touch eliminates the ‘touch and hope’ experience for users of traditional resistive and capacitive touch panels. Utilising our patented techniques to create displacement of the panel surface, it provides a touch experience that closely resembles that of pressing a mechanical key, making touch panels far more user-friendly. The ability to produce audio feedback using the same devices is an added bonus in many applications.”
The HCM-1 operates from a single +3.3V power supply. Operating current consumption depends on the transducers being driven and the haptic signal profile but the module consumes only 20µA in standby. Engineering samples are being offered to key partners now, with mass production parts available in February 2011 at a price of $6.70 each in 100+ quantities.
Wednesday, January 5, 2011
remote that Sammy's throwing in with its 2011 line of HDTVs? Here it is in person, and dare we say it's one of the most striking factory remotes that we've ever seen. Hard to say without touching if it it really has the chops to go toe-to-toe with our favorite Harmony remotes, but it's definitely superior to anything that LG, Sharp and Sony are tossing in with their sets these days.
>>Hot on the heels of a smorgasbord of new HD gear comes a five-pack of new cameras. Three of 'em are situated in the company's growing DualView line, which places a display on the front that makes self-portraits entirely easier to snap.
>>Flurry Analytics took one look at the rising popularity of Samsung Android devices, its Galaxy line in particular, and wonders if Samsung will someday dominate the Android space. Android, in turn, would have to dominate the smartphone space. Samsung is certainly taking off:
LAS VEGAS, January 5, 2010 -Samsung Telecommunications America (Samsung Mobile), the No. 1 mobile phone provider in the U.S.1, today announced the WiFi-only Samsung Galaxy Tab™ will be available for purchase in the U.S. in the first quarter of 2011.
The Galaxy Tab runs on Android™ 2.2 (Froyo) and features a 7-inch TFT display with 1024 x 600 WSVGA resolution. The lightweight and sleek device weighs only 13 ounces, is 12 millimeters thin and easily fits in a jacket pocket or purse. The Galaxy Tab includes 16GB of internal storage and has microSD expansion for up to 32 GB of additional storage. The Tab also supports Adobe® Flash® Player 10.1 to deliver an enhanced content experience with access to thousands of Web sites packed with complex Flash-based applications and content. The Galaxy Tab's Flash content support includes games, animations, rich Internet applications (RIAs), data presentations and visualizations, ecommerce, video, music and more. The Galaxy Tab is also designed with a rear-facing 3 megapixel camera for taking pictures on-the-go, as well as a front-facing 1.3 megapixel camera and camcorder for video chat.
>>Samsung's latest handset -- announced today in collaboration with AT&T at CES -- is the first to tout "Super AMOLED Plus" technology that features a 50 percent boost in sub-pixel count, promising improvements both in contrast and outdoor readability. Maybe more importantly, the display clocks in at a whopping 4.5 inches
Touch is one of our most important senses. Yet this sensation is absent from most consumer electronics (CE) devices; a deficiency accentuated by the emergence of touchscreens. Even on a glass screen, a button should look like a button, sound like a button, and feel like a button to give the user full sensory awareness that everything works properly. Touchscreens and other user interfaces with immediate and meaningful tactile feedback will improve the usability and appeal of CE devices.
Artificial Muscle, Inc. (AMI) is the leading technology developer, designer, and manufacturer of actuator and sensing components based on a proprietary technology platform called Electroactive Polymer Artificial Muscle (EPAM). EPAM technology offers significant advantages over traditional technologies used to provide movement. It is much lighter, smaller, quieter, more responsive, and durable than competing alternatives. The form factor is versatile and simple to integrate in virtually any end market product where actuation is required. However, we have focused our efforts on the overwhelming need for awareness through touch (haptics) in the market for consumer electronics.
Our Reflex™ brand products are the only actuators on the market capable of creating "real feel" – a limitless array of genuine touch sensations. AMI delivers a more complete and fulfilling user experience with high fidelity haptics.
>>So far, 45 patients have been treated with the device since the hospital acquired it in September. The hospital foundation is still fundraising for the $3.5-million system.
Monday, January 3, 2011
>>Lenovo will show its first tablets this week as it moves to make a mark in the fast-growing market led by Apple's iPad and Samsung's Galaxy Tab.
Lenovo executives said two consumer tablet devices will be shown at CES (Consumer Electronics Show), which will be held in Las Vegas between Jan. 6 and 9, where further details about the products will also be shared.
nominees for election as directors of the Issuer pursuant to letter agreements (the “Compensation Letter Agreements”). Pursuant to the terms of
the Compensation Letter Agreements, Value and Opportunity Master Fund has agreed to pay each of Messrs. Barron and Traub (i) $10,000 in
cash upon the earlier to occur of (a) the filing of a preliminary consent statement with the SEC relating to the Solicitation and (b) the
submission of a letter to the Issuer nominating Messrs. Barron and Traub for election as directors at the 2011 Annual Meeting and (ii) $10,000
in cash upon the earlier to occur of (a) the filing of a definitive consent statement with the SEC relating to the Solicitation and (b) the filing of a
definitive proxy statement with the SEC relating to a solicitation of proxies in favor of Messrs. Barron and Traub’s election as directors of the
Issuer at the Annual Meeting.
Pursuant to the Compensation Letter Agreements, each of Messrs. Barron and Traub agreed to use such compensation to
acquire securities of the Issuer (the “Nominee Shares”) at such time that Messrs. Barron and Traub shall determine, but in any event no later
than 14 days after receipt of such compensation. If elected or appointed to serve as a director of the Board, each of Messrs. Barron and Traub
agreed not to sell, transfer or otherwise dispose of any Nominee Shares within two years of their election or appointment as a director;
provided, however, in the event that the Issuer enters into a business combination with a third party, each of Messrs. Barron and Traub may
sell, transfer or exchange the Nominee Shares in accordance with the terms of such business combination.
nominating Messrs. Barron, Feld and/or Traub, (the “Nominees”), as set forth therein, and announcing its intention to solicit proxies for their
election to the Issuer’s Board at the Issuer’s 2011 annual meeting of shareholders, or any other meeting of shareholders held in lieu thereof, and
any adjournments, postponements, reschedulings or continuations thereof (the “2011 Annual Meeting”). The Reporting Persons believe that
the terms of two (2) directors currently serving on the Board expire at the 2011 Annual Meeting and if this remains the same, Value and
Opportunity Master Fund will withdraw one (1) of its Nominees. The Reporting Persons intend to engage in discussions with management, the
Board and shareholders of the Issuer regarding the nomination of directors at the 2011 Annual Meeting and the composition of the Issuer’s
Ramius, as the sole member of each of Value and Opportunity Advisors and Ramius Advisors, may be deemed the beneficial
owner of the (i) 1,756,872 Shares owned by Value and Opportunity Master Fund, (ii) 331,898 Shares owned by Navigation
Master Fund and (iii) 217,790 Shares owned by COIL.
Percentage: Approximately 8.2%.
>>SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Toshiba Corp. is hoping to lure consumers to its new tablet computer by including a screen that is slightly larger than the iPad and offering a version of Google Inc.'s Android mobile operating software geared toward such devices.
Tentatively called the Toshiba Tablet, the device will include a touch screen that measures 10.1 inches diagonally -- compared with 9.7 inches on Apple Inc.'s iPad. Toshiba's device will also have the forthcoming version of Android, called Honeycomb.
Over the past few years, Toshiba has been a player in the market for netbooks -- small, low-cost, portable laptops with less computing power than standard laptops -- and Osako doesn't believe the Toshiba Tablet signals the demise of that category.
He said tablets are a quick, easy way to access entertainment content. But tablets have on-screen keyboards, and the regular keyboard on a netbook makes it better suited for more text-intensive things such as writing lots of e-mails and instant messages, he said.
"I think this is going to grow the market for mobile devices rather than taking away from it," he said.
>>Samsung Electronics Co., the world’s second-largest maker of wireless handsets, said it met a sales target for its most popular smartphone as the company seeks to narrow the gap with Apple Inc.’s iPhone.
Samsung sold 10 million units of the Galaxy S model in 2010 after introducing the device in June, the company said in an e- mailed statement today. The Suwon, South Korea-based phonemaker aims to double sales of smartphones this year as more customers use the device to make video calls, read electronic books and use social networking sites.
...The Korean company will probably ship 61 million smartphones this year, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. said in a report on Dec. 13.
>>A SUBSTANTIAL part of all stock trading in the United States takes place in a warehouse in a nondescript business park just off the New Jersey Turnpike.
Few humans are present in this vast technological sanctum, known as New York Four. Instead, the building, nearly the size of three football fields, is filled with long avenues of computer servers illuminated by energy-efficient blue phosphorescent light.