PayPal wants to partner with Apple on iPhone mobile payment platform – report

Online payment giant PayPal has reportedly been pitching Apple a potential partnership — one that could see PayPal handle back-end security measures for a future iPhone-driven mobile payment system.

Touch ID

Details on PayPal’s alleged pitch were revealed on Thursday by Re/code, citing unnamed sources who indicated that the company told Apple is it is "willing to white label parts of its payment service," including fraud detection and even potentially the processing of payments. PayPal is apparently willing to handle the background work for Apple because it has a strong desire to be a part of any mobile payment services the iPhone maker may offer.

While PayPal is apparently pushing hard at Apple, sources reportedly said it’s "unlikely" that the Cupertino, Calif., company would need PayPal’s services. However, that doesn’t mean that a partnership is impossible.

Sources reportedly indicated that Apple is "finally committed" to a mobile payment platform, within which the iPhone would be the central device. Reporter Jason Del Ray suggested it could be a "scary proposition" for PayPal if it were unable to forge a partnership with Apple.

This week, Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook himself hinted that his company could offer a mobile payment system in the future driven by the secure Touch ID fingerprint sensor found on the company’s flagship iPhone 5s. Cook went as far as to say that Apple is "intrigued" by the possibility of mobile payments, and admitted that e-wallet-like functionality was "one of the thoughts behind Touch ID."

For now, Touch ID is only used to unlock the iPhone 5s and to authorize iTunes Store purchases. The fingerprint sensor embedded in the home button relies on a "secure enclave" verification system embedded in the A7 processor.

Earlier this month, AppleInsider was first to reveal a new patent filing from Apple that detailed a touchless secure e-wallet system. The proposed invention describes a purchasing device, such as an iPhone, that would authorize transactions via two secure wireless interfaces.

JQuery vs Ajax vs Javascript

What is Jquery?

The purpose of jQuery is to make it much easier to use JavaScript on your website. JQuery takes a lot of common tasks that require many lines of JavaScript code to accomplish, and wraps them into methods that you can call with a single line of code.

jQuery also simplifies a lot of the complicated things from JavaScript, like AJAX calls and DOM manipulation.

AJAX is just another tool that can be used by scripting languages like Javascript in order to enhance the look and feel of their web pages.

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Ajax vs Javascript

Ajax (Asynchronous Javascript and XML) is a subset of javascript. Ajax is way for the client-side browser to communicate with the server (for example: retrieve data from a database) without having to perform a page refresh.

In short; AJAX is about loading data in the background and display it on the webpage, without reloading the whole page.

Examples of applications using AJAX: Gmail, Google Maps, Youtube, and Facebook tabs.

Why Use JQuery Instead of Just Basic JavaScript?

JavaScript is a fairly low-level programming language. It does not provide advanced page manipulation and decoration functions, and it provides nothing concerning animations. Moreover, using direct JavaScript can cause issues related to browser incompatibilities. Those issues have made many JavaScript applications difficult to code, resulting in high maintenance costs.

JQuery aims to ease all these problems by providing a lightweight library that adds many advanced and cross-browser functions to the standard language. In addition, there is a very dynamic community that adds more-advanced components based on JQuery.

A modern Web application wouldn’t be complete without some AJAX functionality. JQuery provides functions for sending HTTP GET and POST requests, and it can work easily with the JavaScript Object Notation (JSON) format we saw in the first article. This functionality enables us to query the REST back end we coded in the first article.

Pros:

  • jQuery removes the headaches of cross platform Javascript compatibilities.

  • jQuery is very easy to use as compared to other JavaScript libraries and JavaScript as well.

  • jQuery has a large set of library/functions.

  • jQuery has good documentation and help manuals are easily available.

  • jQuery supports AJAX functionality.

Cons:

  • You are no longer writing the native language, so your understanding of what is actually occuring may be limited.

  • jQuery requires to include jQuery library files into project which takes space on the web server. But JavaScript can be used without adding any libraries. Also, if user wants include more jQuery libraries, version conflicts may occur.

Ajax:

AJAX stands for Asynchronous JavaScript and XML. It is used for allowing the client side of an application to communitcate with the server side of the application. Before AJAX, there was no way for the client side of a web application to communicate directly with the server. Instead, you would have to use page loads. With AJAX, the client and server can communicate freely with one another.

Pros:

With Ajax in a website there is no need to refresh a Web page continuously. For users who are waiting to see if they won an auction, keeping an eye on sports scores, or closely following the latest weather forecasts, Ajax enhancements to these types of Web pages can greatly improve their experiences.

AJAX pros and cons

AJAX is rapidly becoming an integral part of several websites, several well established brands online now use AJAX to handle their web applications because it provides better interactivity to their users, this is due to the fact that implementing AJAX on a website, does not require a page to be reloaded for dynamic content on web pages. While there are numerous reasons to switch to AJAX there are quite a few matters that would make you reconsider using this combination of technologies as well. Below are some of the advantages and disadvantages of using AJAX.

Advantages

  • Better interactivity

  • This is pretty much the most striking benefit behind why several developers and webmasters are switching to AJAX for their websites. AJAX allows easier and quicker interaction between user and website as pages are not reloaded for content to be displayed.

  • Easier navigation

AJAX applications on websites can be built to allow easier navigation to users in comparison to using the traditional back and forward button on a browser.

  • Compact

With AJAX, several multi purpose applications and features can be handled using a single web page, avoiding the need for clutter with several web pages.

  • Backed by reputed brands

Another assuring reason to use AJAX on your websites is the fact that several complex web applications are handled using AJAX, Google Maps is the most impressive and obvious example, other powerful, popular scripts such as the vBulletin forum software has also incorporated AJAX into their latest version.

Disadvantages

  • The back and refresh button are rendered useless

  • With AJAX, as all functions are loaded on a dynamic page without the page being reloaded or more importantly a URL being changed (except for a hash symbol maybe), clicking the back or refresh button would take you to an entirely different web page or to the beginning of what your dynamic web page was processing. This is the main drawback behind AJAX but fortunately with good programming skills this issue can be fixed.

  • It is built on javascript
  • While javascript is secure and has been heavily used by websites for a long period of time, a percentage of website surfers prefer to turn javascript functionality off on their browser rendering the AJAX application useless, a work around to this con is present as well, where the developer will need to code a parallel non-javascript version of the dynamic web page to cater to these users.

Dell Moves Toward Cheap Networking


Almost three months after the collapse of the personal computer industry forced it to become a private company, Dell is moving on its new strategy. It involves destroying the computer-networking business.

On Tuesday morning, Dell announced it would offer networking equipment that is built with nonspecialized semiconductors and an open-source operating system, as opposed to the highly proprietary gear and software from Cisco Systems, Juniper Networks and Hewlett-Packard.

While that is unlikely to be a huge business soon for Dell, it lends credibility and muscle to what has been a growing effort to dislodge these incumbents through cheaper, easier-to-build equipment.

If Dell and others can do that, a result would be lower costs at the large data centers run by Google, Facebook and very large banks and companies. Cheaper networking could also make the Internet even more ubiquitous.

That is, of course, if Dell and its low-cost brethren succeed.

Dell’s operating system for the new networking switch is made by Cumulus Networks, a company co-founded by former senior engineers at Cisco and VMware, a pioneer in lowering the cost of computer servers via clever software. It plans to offer other operating systems on its cheap boxes as well.

In 2011, Dell paid a reported $700 million for Force10 Networks, a company that already used so-called “merchant” chips.

“One of our goals is to accelerate the heck out of this market,” said Tom Burns, Dell’s vice president of networking. “I see a big level of excitement from the financial business — they see this as a way of moving away from proprietary, restricted networks.”

While costs were still being worked out, he said, Dell equipment could be 25 percent cheaper than the gear from the established networking companies.

Jonathan LaCour, the head of product development at a Los Angeles-based computer hosting provider called DreamHost, has been testing the Dell product over several hundred servers. He said purchasing and operation costs were 50 percent less than usual, but the real advantage was in running a machine that worked more like a server. “All the moves are easier when you don’t have specialized people yelling at you,” he said.

J.R. Rivers, the co-founder of Cumulus, went even further, suggesting in a recent blog post that a Cumulus product cost one-half to one-tenth as much as Cisco.

CumulusJ.R. Rivers, the co-founder of Cumulus, a pioneer in lowering the cost of computer servers via clever software.

“The same thing that happened to servers is happening to networking,” said Mr. Rivers, who added that his company and Dell will target Internet service providers, or ISPs, like cable and telecommunications companies, as well as banks and Google-type Internet companies. “We want to be the next Cisco,” he said.

He has some company there. Arista Networks, another advanced switching company that works with merchant silicon, has for several years been selling boxes that appear to deliver high performance at a lower price. Jayshree Ullal, the company’s chief executive, said Arista was also prepared to offer Arista’s operating system by itself, but said the market for that would grow slowly.

“I have that, and I’m absolutely prepared to do it,” she said. “We were prepared to do that when we started this company, but customers insisted on getting a box. There aren’t a lot of people who want to build things from scratch.” Having the likes of Dell and other commodity manufacturers in the game, she said, underlines the reality that “no one in networking is invincible anymore.”

Cisco was not impressed. “The ‘white box’ strategy is laden with hidden costs, and forces customers to compromise on performance,” David McCulluch, a Cisco spokesman, wrote in an email. “A ‘white box’ running Cumulus, for example, may cost 38 percent more than Cisco over a three-year lifetime, and its total cost of ownership may be 75-percent higher than a Cisco network.”

While Dell is using off-the-shelf chips, he said, Cisco has over 600 specialist engineers “and unrivaled scale and purchasing power, enabling us to always deliver greater functionality at lower cost.”

Ms. Ullal, who has also written about the changing economics of networking, said her business now has four basic types of customers: financial firms, traditional corporations, smaller ISPs and the “cloud titans,” which depend on enormous global cloud computing systems. This last group, which includes Yahoo, Facebook, Microsoft, eBay, Apple, Google and Amazon, is so far the only significant market for software-only networking products, since it takes considerable engineering talent to install and run these systems.

Dell’s involvement could take over some of the headaches of installing and running them, and that would grow the market faster. Expect others. Dell’s announcement was made at the start of a gathering of the Open Compute Project , a Facebook-led group involved in lowering the cost of data center operations through open source engineering.

Source: http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/01/28/dell-moves-toward-cheap-networking/?_php=true&_type=blogs&_r=0

Gmail Bug Might Have Accidentally Deleted Your Email

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Days before a massive Gmail outage, Google’s email service was struck with a bug that may have deleted some messages without permission.

The search giant on Tuesday sent out notices to those who could have been affected, apologizing for the inconvenience and assuring users that the issue has been fixed.

"You may have been impacted by a recent issue in Gmail that inadvertently caused some actions (e.g. delete, report spam) taken while viewing a message to be applied to a different message," the memo said, based on the screenshot published by The Verge. "The issue occurred between January 15 and January 22 and is now fixed."

Users are encouraged to check their Trash and Spam folders before Feb. 14 to make sure no items unintentionally landed in the wrong place.

"We don’t have much more to share beyond the information in the notice to users," a Google spokeswoman told PCMag.

The company did, however, confirm that the bug appeared in a software update and impacted only a small group of actions in the iOS app, mobile browsers, and the offline version of Gmail; it did not affect all users.

Gmail users at the PCMag offices appear to have been unaffected.

The snafu quietly occurred just before Gmail experienced a major service disruption on Friday. Reports of the outage hit Twitter shortly after 2 p.m. ET, and trouble hit other Google services, including Google+ and Google Hangouts. The Gmail problem was fixed by 3:23 p.m., while Google+ and Hangouts returned about 10 minutes later.

Ironically, members of Google’s Site Reliability Engineering team were conducting a Reddit "Ask Me Anything" session when the email service went down.