Author Archives: Matt Vella
  • Facebook Home pre-release leaks

    The web gets an early taste of Home, Facebook's next big thing.

    By Matt Vella, senior editor

    FORTUNE -- Facebook's much-hyped mobile phone software, Home, has slipped into the world early.

    Home, which will operate exclusively on Google (GOOG) Android handsets, is set to be released to the public on April 12. Smartphone news site MoDaCo has leaked a pre-release version of the software.

    Facebook's (FB) software will act as a launcher, taking MORE

    Apr 8, 2013 10:06 AM ET
  • Google's haunting Fukushima Street View images

    Google is archiving photographs and video of before and after the Fukushima disaster.

    By Matt Vella, senior editor

    FORTUNE -- Google's Street View has come to one of the most desolate spots on earth. Namie-machi, a small village in the Fukushima Prefecture, has been a ghost town since shortly after the Great East Japan Earthquake of 2011. The city was evacuated of surviving residents due to the radiation created by one MORE

    Mar 29, 2013 2:26 PM ET
  • This incredible face is the future of tech

    New graphics technology is pushing the boundaries of believability.

    By Matt Vella, senior editor

    FORTUNE -- Nothing says "the future" like a disembodied head. As developers and designers begin churning out the next generation of games and entertainment, the pace of technology demos showing what types of computer-generated graphics will soon be possible has picked up. And that means one thing: more creepy-yet-astonishing 3D-generated heads.

    Activision (ATVI) is showing off new technology at MORE

    Mar 28, 2013 12:17 PM ET
  • Building two marshmallow companies

    By Steve Vassallo, contributor

    FORTUNE -- In 1972, a team of psychologists called children, one at a time, into a room at Stanford University's Bing Nursery School. In the room was a plate with a single marshmallow on it.

    Each child was told they could choose to eat the one marshmallow immediately – but they were also told that, if they waited, they could eat two. The psychologists then slipped out of the MORE

    Mar 26, 2013 10:12 AM ET
  • Life, death, and free culture in the Mission

    Ilya Zhitomirskiy was supposed to be the next Mark Zuckerberg. He had the startup, the crowdfunding, the loyal following. And then everything fell apart.

    By Matthew Shaer

    FORTUNE -- At 8 p.m. on Nov. 12, 2011, a San Francisco entrepreneur named Tony Lai received a call from a number he did not recognize. Lai had recently returned from a trip to Costco to pick up party supplies -- he and a friend MORE

    Mar 26, 2013 5:00 AM ET
  • UrgentRx is reinventing pills

    The Denver-based startup is pushing an alternative to standard-issue pills. Sam Zell, Hillary Swank and Herb Simon are fans.

    By Doron Levin, contributor

    FORTUNE -- Jordan Eisenberg, 31, was carrying a Benadryl around in his wallet back in 2009 when it dawned on him that he should find a better way to ensure his own safety in case of an allergy attack. He's violently allergic to carrots, peanuts and many other fresh MORE

    Mar 20, 2013 11:21 AM ET
  • Robots have failed Fukushima Daiichi and Japan

    One of the most highly innovative countries in the world did not have the technology it should have had.

    By Michael Fitzpatrick, contributor

    FORTUNE -- Two years since a shudder in the Earth's crust devastated Japan, the country's scientists and engineers are still attempting to develop technologies to make Fukushima safe from radiation. But progress has been slow and—because of institutional failings—more advanced technologies have not been available to workers at the MORE

    Mar 20, 2013 8:29 AM ET
  • How would you like to invest in immortality?

    Russian Internet mogul Dmitry Itskov is looking for backers for the world's first immortality research center.

    By Clay Dillow, contributor

    FORTUNE -- Startups devise some fairly clever tactics to sell investors on their business models, but Russian tech entrepreneur Dmitry Itskov's newest venture sells itself: Invest in his new research and development interest and the payoff could be immortality. A new corporate entity that the Russian multi-millionaire will formally announce at an MORE

    Mar 20, 2013 5:00 AM ET
  • Electronic Arts CEO John Riccitiello to step down

    Riccitiello steps down as video game publisher Electronic Arts has been struggling to adapt to a changing games market. Revenue and earnings per share will be at the low end of or below January guidance.

    By Matt Vella, deputy technology editor

    FORTUNE -- Electronic Arts CEO John Riccitiello will step down on March 30, the video game publisher announced today.

    In a statement to the press, EA (EA) said it was naming Larry Probst as MORE

    Mar 18, 2013 4:51 PM ET
  • Sony's PS4 is a win - with reservations

    Sony's high-octane presentation of its next-generation PlayStation 4 gaming system mostly impressed observers.

    FORTUNE -- On Wednesday night, Sony launched the latest version of the Playstation to thumping music, lasers, and a giant screen that wrapped around the audience. The company hopes the super-charged PS4 will help it retake the top spot among console makers and prove its relevance in the changing games market. The games maker touted slick graphics and MORE

    Feb 21, 2013 10:51 AM ET
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