Something I thought was worth a share
Something I thought was worth a share
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If your head is still spinning from the Apple event on Tuesday, you're not the only one.
In the span of two hours, Apple unveiled two new iPhones, a smartwatch, an operating system update and an electronic wallet that may soon make plastic credit cards a relic of the past.
It was exciting -- and also a lot to take in. Here are five of the most frequently asked questions from the event. If you have one we haven't covered, let us know in the comments.
Apple Introduces the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus
Head to Head: How Apple's New iPhone, Watch Compare to Samsung's Products
How Apple's iPhone Has Evolved Over the Years
When can you get the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus?
Tim Cook called them the best iPhones Apple has ever produced, but you can't get one just yet. Pre-orders start on Sept. 12 and the first units will ship on Sept. 19.
The iPhone 6 starts at $199 for a 16 GB configuration, $299 for 64 GB and $399 for a whopping 128 GB configuration, with a two-year contract.
The iPhone 6 Plus starts at $299 (16 GB), $399 (64 GB) and $499 (128 GB). Both phones come in three colors: gold, silver and space gray.
What's the battery life of the Apple Watch?
While the Apple Watch excited with its style and functionality, one of the lingering questions is whether its battery life will be enough to entice buyers.
Apple has not revealed the battery life of the watch, which is slated to come out in early 2015, however CEO Tim Cook's comment that you can charge the watch at night while you sleep has led many to speculate that the watch will need to be recharged every day. While declining to provide an estimate on expected battery life, Apple spokeswoman Nat Kerris told tech news website Re/code that the company expects users will charge their Apple Watches once daily.
What we do know is how to charge the Apple Watch. It will include MagSafe technology with inductive charging, meaning all users have to do is hold the connector near the back of the watch and snap it into place.
Apple says it's so easy that it can be done even after you've already turned out the lights for bedtime.
Is it necessary to have an iPhone if you buy the Apple Watch?
Yes. Apple Watch, which starts at $349, will be available in early 2015. The watch requires iPhone models 5 and newer.
What are the security features of Apple Pay?
Apple is asking consumers to trust them with a digital wallet called Apple Pay. Tim Cook told ABC News in an exclusive interview with "World News" anchor David Muir that the product is "incredibly safe."
Apple uses a new chip called the Secure Element, which is embedded in the new devices. The chip stores users' encrypted payment information and allows them to pay for items with a simple swipe.
"I feel incredibly certain that it's very secure -- the most secure thing out there," Cook said.
At the event on Tuesday, Eddy Cue, Apple's senior vice president of Internet software and services, said users can add a new card by taking a photo of it, getting it verified at their bank, which then adds it to Passbook.
Payments can then be made with a simple touch of the device at payment points, which will be in some of the most popular stores in the United States.
"Apple doesn't know what you bought, where you bought it or how much you paid for it," Cue said.
I have an iPhone 4. What does this all mean for me?
Here's the not so great news: The shiny new iOS update will only be compatible with the iPhone 4S and later models.
Apple's iOS 8 is being hailed as the biggest operating system release ever because it comes with updates to popular apps, such as messages, photos and the keyboard. The operating system update will be released on Sept. 17 -- two days before the new iPhones go on sale.
While you won't be able to update your phone or take advantage of the latest and greatest apps, there is still some good news for iPhone 4 users who are ready for something new but don't want to shell out on the iPhone 6.
The iPhone 5C is being given away for free by many carriers, along with certain contract commitments. You heard right. Free.
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Michael LoPorto arrived at the Rensselaer County Courthouse in Troy, N.Y. on Tuesday for his trial, which accuses him of being part of a "massive" voter fraud scheme.
The former Democratic city councilman and popular local restaurant owner appeared jaunty and relaxed as he answered a series of questions from Fox News -- despite facing felony allegations that could send him to prison for seven years.
"Did you do anything wrong?"
"Did you forge any absentee ballots?"
"No, I did not."
"Did you steal an election, or try to steal one?"
"Again, you asked me that before, I told you no!"
For a year now, LoPorto has steadfastly maintained his innocence, along with current Rensselaer County Democratic Elections Commissioner Edward McDonough, who refused to comment on the case Tuesday. They are the first indicted officials to be tried in a widespread investigation that has implicated eight Democrats, including county and city elected officials and party operatives. Four defendants have already pleaded guilty to a variety of charges, and what has already unfolded exposes just how easy it could be for political insiders to illegally manipulate the electoral system.
Voters told Fox News they never filled out absentee ballot applications for the 2009 Working Families Party primary, and were later stunned to learn the applications were, in fact, turned in to the Board of Elections, with ballots cast in their names. Democratic candidates routinely try to secure the Working Families electoral line to obtain more votes in the general election. The party was associated with the now-defunct community group ACORN.
"Jackals prey upon the weakest member of the herd. That's what happened here," LoPorto's attorney Michael Feit said of the guilty pleas in which former officials admitted forging ballot applications and submitting them as legitimate votes.
Feit concedes "there is no question" that someone tried to steal the election. "It is awful, it's despicable, it's terrible," he added.
But he insists his client was not a part of what happened, noting neither LoPorto's DNA nor fingerprints were found on any of the allegedly faked applications. Forgery charges were dropped against LoPorto before the trial began, leaving 29 counts of criminal possession of a forged instrument.
"There is no proof, in my view, that will show ... that he knew that what he possessed was a forged instrument," said Feit, referring to the allegedly faked absentee ballot applications. "Michael LoPorto is not 'a good 'ol boy.' He's not been a politician all his life. He doesn't rely on a political job to support himself and his family. He, in fact, got the most votes in this election. He didn't need to rig any election."
McDonough's attorney, Brian Premo, has said in court papers that his client "asserted his innocence" and has called the proceedings "a wrongful scapegoat investigation and prosecution." McDonough faces 74 counts of forgery and criminal possession of a forged instrument.
Two veteran Democratic political operatives in Troy said voter fraud is an accepted way of winning elections, and faking absentee ballots was commonplace.
Anthony DeFiglio, a Democratic Committeeman who pleaded guilty to falsifying business records, told state police investigators that such fraud is actually "an ongoing scheme and it occurs on both sides of the aisle. The people who are targeted live in low-income housing and there is a sense that they are a lot less likely to ask any questions... What appears as a huge conspiracy to nonpolitical persons is really a normal political tactic."
Anthony Renna, another longtime Democratic operative and party committeeman, admitted to forging an absentee ballot application. He said the process of handing in forged ballots and fake votes ensures that "ballots are voted correctly."
"I knew that the actual voters had not voted the ballots or signed the envelopes, but that did not concern me. I am not the ballot police," Renna said in a statement to police. "I have been present when 'ballots were voted correctly' by party operatives. Voted correctly is a term used for a forged application or ballot."
According to transcripts, Renna said, "I have been asked if I ever discuss forging ballots/applications with anyone and whether any ballots/applications were ever forged in front of me. The answer is no, because if two people know a secret, it is one too many. There is a saying in politics, 'I can't rob a bank with you.' This saying refers to someone who can't be trusted."
DeFiglio, through his family, declined an opportunity to comment to Fox News. Renna also declined to comment.
"It shakes the confidence of the voters when they see something like this happened," said former Troy Mayor Harry Tutunjian, who recently left office and is now a Republican member of the county legislature. "We want to encourage people to get out and vote and express their democracy. But if they see their right to vote being taken away by others, they are going to be hesitant and think that their vote isn't worth anything,"
Special Prosecutor Trey Smith obtained indictments against a slew of public officials, including former City Council President Clem Campana, City Clerk William McInerney, and two city councilmen besides LoPorto, John Brown and Gary Galuski. Campana and Galuski have pleaded not guilty.
Brown, who pleaded guilty to possession of a forged instrument, could go to jail for six months. LoPorto, who ran for re-election last November as the Working Families Party candidate, was defeated.
McDonough remains at the Board of Elections.
"Vigilance on our level as elected officials in the city of Troy, and the county and even state level, can make sure that things like this don't happen in the future," said Tutunjian, who hopes "the trial's beginning will help put a resolution to this ugly chapter in Troy's history."
As for LoPorto, he had a simple message for reporters as he stood in the courthouse: "I hope I get vindicated."
Meredith Orban and Tamara Gitt contributed to this report. If you suspect voter or election fraud where you live, tell us: Voterfraud@Foxnews.com
Eric Shawn is a New York-based anchor and senior correspondent for FOX News Channel (FNC). He anchors "America's News Headquarters" on Sundays from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. ET. and "Sunday Morning Futures with Maria Bartiromo." He anchors frequently during the week on the Fox News Channel and reports on politics, terrorism, and foreign affairs. Shawn has provided live coverage from both the Democratic and Republican National Conventions since 1992. In 2004 he led the Fox News investigative team that uncovered new evidence in the murder of Jimmy Hoffa, based on the claims of hit-man Frank Sheeran. Click here for more information on Eric Shawn.