Microsoft to promote Windows Live suite

After a trickle of updates and “betas” bearing the Windows Live moniker, Microsoft Corp. is ready to start promoting its official package of free desktop programs for e-mail, instant messaging, blogging and sharing photos.

The programs are “essentially a free upgrade for Windows,” said Brian Hall, general manager of Windows Live at Microsoft.

The package includes Windows Live Mail, which can grab messages from multiple free Web-based e-mail accounts, including Microsoft’s Hotmail, Google’s Gmail and AOL e-mail. The new package, which Microsoft formally announced Tuesday, allows PC users to read and respond to mail even when they’re not online, just as Outlook Express, which Microsoft has phased out, did.


Facebook will pursue business interests

Facebook has begun transforming itself from an online hangout into an online business district.

Companies can now create their own pages on Facebook for the first time and target ads on Facebook based on what users and their friends buy and do online, under a new program announced Tuesday. Advertisers also will be able to show users their pitches in the guise of a friend’s endorsement.

For example, if the friend just booked a vacation on Travelocity, the online travel agency will be able to display the friend’s photo to entice the user to buy flights and hotel stays.

The friend would have control over whether to share that information, but the user would have fewer choices over whether to receive it.


Ex-Freddie Mac chief, government settle

The government on Tuesday reached a $16.4 million settlement with Freddie Mac’s former CEO for his role in the mortgage finance company’s multibillion-dollar accounting scandal.

Leland Brendsel, who was ousted in 2003, agreed to pay $2.5 million in fines to the government, give back $10.5 million in salary and bonuses to Freddie Mac and to waive claims against the company for compensation worth $3.4 million.

The Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight, which regulates Freddie Mac and its government-sponsored sibling, Fannie Mae, filed civil charges against Brendsel in December 2003.

Under the settlement reached Tuesday, Brendsel’s disgorged salary and bonuses will be used to help homeowners at risk of foreclosure.

Quarterly loss narrows for Southwest Gas

Southwest Gas Corp. on Tuesday said its third quarter loss, typical because of warm weather, narrowed from a year ago.

In a statement, the company said its net loss was $9.3 million, or 22 cents per share, for the three months ended Sept. 30, compared with a net loss of $10.7 million, or 26 cents per share, a year earlier.

Third-quarter operating revenue rose 5.6 percent to $371.5 million from $351.8 million. Operating margin, defined as operating revenues less the cost of gas sold, rose 7 percent.

Southwest Gas shares rose 9 cents, or 0.32 percent, Tuesday to close at $28.15 on the New York Stock Exchange.


Divisional winner of Series arrested in raid

A divisional winner of the World Series of Poker was arrested with 15 other men during a gambling raid that yielded almost $20,000, police said.

Paul McKinney and the others were playing poker Friday when the raid occurred, police said. Authorities seized cash, playing cards and poker chips, as well as betting slips for the weekend’s sporting events.

McKinney, 82, of Weber City, Va., won the 2005 Seniors Division of the World Series of Poker tournament in Las Vegas, taking home $202,725, series spokesman Dave Curley said. At the time he was the oldest winner in World Series of Poker history.

Police in Kingsport, in eastern Tennessee, conducted the raid after getting a tip.


Yahoo rapped for role in journalist’s jailing

In an unprecedented public shaming of a U.S. Internet giant, Yahoo and its chief executive, Jerry Yang, were pilloried Tuesday by a congressional committee for the company’s role in the jailing of a Chinese journalist and for misleading lawmakers last year about what it knew about the controversial case.

In a hearing before the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Yang, who emigrated from Taiwan as a child, bowed in apology to the weeping mother of the imprisoned Chinese journalist, Shi Tao.

Yahoo provided Shi’s name to Chinese authorities in 2004 after they demanded to know the owner of a Yahoo e-mail address that had forwarded a government memo to an international human-rights group. The memo had forbidden news coverage of the anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre.

Shi was sentenced to 10 years in prison for divulging what China had deemed a state secret.


Ethanol slowdown doesn’t hurt ADM

Food processor Archer Daniels Midland Co. surprised Wall Street on Tuesday by reporting stronger-than-expected profits and surging sales despite a slowing of the ethanol boom, demonstrating its strength in oilseeds processing and agricultural services.

ADM’s first-quarter earnings of $441 million were 9 percent higher than a year ago. But that it was able to shatter earnings and sales forecasts despite a drop in prices for ethanol, which had propelled its growth in recent quarters, and higher corn prices impressed industry analysts.

Profit for the three months ended Sept. 30 were 68 cents per share, up from $403.9 million, or 61 cents per share, during the same period a year earlier.

Sales rose 35.4 percent to $12.8 billion from $9.45 billion.


Google to help drivers find way as they fill up

Lost drivers soon will be able to Google for help at the pump.

As part of a partnership to be announced today, the online search leader will dispense driving directions at thousands of gasoline pumps across the United States beginning early next month.

The pumps, made by Gilbarco Veeder-Root, include an Internet connection and will display Google’s mapping service in color on a small screen. Drivers will be able to scroll through several categories to find local landmarks, hotels, restaurants and hospitals selected by the gas station’s owner.

After the driver selects a destination, the pump will print directions. Eventually, Gilbarco Veeder-Root hopes to enable motorists to type in an address and get directions.


Treasury prices mixed after tense session

Treasury prices closed mixed after a tense session Tuesday as the stock managed a rebound even as investors remained anxious about widening debt problems.

The benchmark 10-year Treasury note fell 0.16 points to 103.06 with a 4.36 percent yield, up from 4.34 percent late Monday.

The 30-year long bond dropped 0.31 points to 105 0.53 points with a 4.65 percent yield, up from 4.63 percent late Monday.

MGM Grand Plans To Add Retail And Dining To Its Strip Facade
MGM Grand President and Chief Operating Officer Scott Sibella said executives are “discussing redeveloping that entire frontage of the building out to the Las Vegas Strip.” (Todd Prince/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Boyd Gaming planning new corporate campus
Casino operator Boyd Gaming Corp. has filed plans to build a new corporate campus. The plans call for two 10-story office buildings and a six-level parking garage in the southwest Las Vegas Valley. Boyd Gaming operates The Orleans, the Suncoast, downtown's California Hotel and other properties. The new headquarters would be just a mile from its current main office building.
Bellagio Conservatory transformed to celebrate Year of the Pig
The Bellagio Conservatory Team transformed the 14,000 square foot conservatory to commemorate Chinese New Year, the holiday that marks the end of the coldest days of winter. (Rachel Aston/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
CES 2019: Intro uses sound to connect people
Intro, a startup that is part of the Future Worlds Accelerator in the UK, has an app that uses ultrasonic sound to find people and companies nearby.
CES 2019 Video: CES wraps up another year
Time-lapse video of the action at CES 2019 in Las Vegas. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
CES 2019: Create your own beauty products
Beauty Mix by BeautyByMe is a product that lets you create your own cosmetics and beauty products. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
CES 2019: Picobrew’s home brew machine
Picobrew brings automation to homebrewing. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
CES 2019: Surviving CES
What it's like to spend four days working the mammoth tech convention. (Jason Bracelin/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Haier’s smart home
Haier presented smart home technology at CES 2019.
CES 2019 VIDEO: Foldimate makes laundry day easy
Foldimate has created a machine that will fold your laundry for you. Just feed it anything you need folded and it will do the rest. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
CES 2019: Opte device corrects skin spots
Opte from Proctor and Gamble is a device for correcting spots and freckles from skin. It analyzes the area for spots and then covers them with a serum of matching skin tone. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Circa hotel-casino in downtown Las Vegas unveiled
Derek Stevens reveals Circa hotel-casino in downtown Las Vegas. He plans open by the end of 2020. (K.M Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Circa, new casino coming to Fremont Street
Casino owner Derek Stevens announces his new property Circa, coming to Fremont Street in downtown Las Vegas in late 2020. (Michael Quine/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Dreenk My Oeno makes wine suggestions
At CES 2019 in Las Vegas, the Dreenk My Oeno tells you all about wine.
Polaroid One Step Plus camera unveiled at CES 2019
Polaroid has moved into the digital age with its One Step Plus camera with Bluetooth. With the connected app, it turns your smartphone into a remote for the camera, along with filters and features.
Amazon is everywhere at CES 2019 in Las Vegas
Seemingly everything works with Amazon Alexa
LG Smart Mirror helps you dress snazzy
LG’s Smart Mirror is less of a mirror but more of an assistant to help get you looking snazzy. It takes your image and recommends clothes for you or matches existing clothes with new clothes, which can be purchased right from the mirror. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Underwater robots make waves at CES 2019 in Las Vegas
Robosea is a company dedicated to underwater robotics. They produce consumer robots for underwater filming as well as commercial products which can be used for underwater research. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
CES 2019 - Victrola record players spin in Las Vegas
A new spin on an old favorite, Victrola record players are meeting a demand for retro products. The brand is also making furnitures with built-in speakers.
CES 2019: Slamtec robots ready to serve
Slamtec is a robotics company out of China whose goal is to provide solutions for laser localization mapping and navigation. They have created two autonomous robots that can be used in areas such as bars, restaurants and malls. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Mixologiq drink maker appears at CES 2019 in Las Vegas.
This is the Mixologiq drink maker.
CES 2019: Veritable smart garden
Let’s face it; not all of us have green thumbs. And herbs are particularly difficult to grow, considering their constant need for sunshine. Enter the Veritable smart garden from Exky, which does it all for you. (Heidi Knapp Rinella/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Bonnie Springs Ranch near Las Vegas being sold to developer
Bonnie Springs Ranch near Las Vegas is being sold to a developer, set to close in March. Bonnie Springs, west of Las Vegas off State Route 159 — next to Spring Mountain Ranch State Park — spans more than 60 acres and was on the market for $31 million. The developer and his project partner are under contract to buy the ranch and plan to chop it up mostly into custom-home lots. The plans includes a 25-room motel, a restaurant and a 5,400-square-foot event barn.
Bone-conduction headphones form Aftershokz
Aftershokz offers bone-conduction headphones - headphones that don’t go in the ear.
CES Happy Hour party at Hangover Suite at Caesars Palace
Conventioneers mingled during the Hardware Massive CES 2019 Happy Hour Bash at The Hangover Suite at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @KMCannonPhoto
Autonomous Cars and Futuristic Aircraft Rule CES
Day two of CES was dominated by autonomous cars and futuristic aircraft in the North Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center.
TekNekSavr fights neck problems caused by smart phones
Atiya Syverson invented the TekNekSavr to help fight neck and head problems caused by strains while typing on smart phones. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
New eyeglasses know if you fall and call for help
The French company Abeye has created eye glasses that will detect if the wearer falls and call for help. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Company that creates vibrator-like device claims genders bias against CES
Lora DiCarlo is a women-run start-up that creates a vibrator-like device designed for female pleasure called the Osé. This year they were awarded the CES Innovation Award in the Robotics and Drone Category, but a month later the Consumer Technology Association, which runs CES, rescinded the award and their booth. Haddock and her team believe it is a reflection of gender bias and sexism in an industry with a long history of male domination.
CES-Wagz has new pet products
Wagz has three new products to help create better lives for your pets in a digital world. One is a collar with LTE tracking and an HD camera. Also a smart pet door that only lets your pet in and out. Lastly, a device to humanely keep Fluffy out of certain areas of your home. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
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