Computers

BlackBerry Playbook Coming April 19th

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BlackBerry-PlayBook
Pretty much everybody is getting into the tablet game these days in the wake of the iPad actually making it a viable market. Samsung has the Galaxy Tab, Motorola is putting out the Xoom, and we’re sure there are a bunch of cheesy Chinese knockoffs coming as well. But one competitor people have been awaiting is Research In Motion and how they were going to respond to the tablet craze. Back…

Dell Putting Out a Wi-Fi Only Tablet?

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The Dell Streak has been fairly popular among people who want to pay cell phone companies for the Internet, but don’t want or can’t get an iPad. While it’s not the delicious Apple product that actually turned tablet PCs into something people actually cared about, it’s absolutely serviceable and at $200 with a service contract, it’s a decent price. But what if you don’t want to pay Verizon,…

Wireless VS Traditional Internet Access

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The issue of wireless versus traditional Internet access today hinges on questions of reliability and mobility. The “traditional” or hard-wired Internet services are, right now at least, the more reliable of the two types of service. However, if you really want to experience the true freedom of the Internet, not only the freedom of information but the freedom to access that information from…

Not a Moment Too Soon: Windows 7 Ship Date Announced

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Windows 7 Ship Date – I think we’ve all been waiting for Windows 7 since that first fateful moment we clicked Enter after typing in the password on a new Vista set-up.  The whole “Mojave” diversion was like bleach in the wounds. Thankfully, we won’t have to wait much longer. Microsoft has announced that Windows 7 will be shipping to customers on Oct. 22. I’ll be…

Bing Jumps Into Action Several Days Early

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Bing Search Engine by Microsoft – Ahead of schedule appears to be the theme of this beautiful, bright 1st of June. Microsoft’s anticipated new search engine Bing was originally scheduled to launch on Wednesday, but is already available today. Though it will take more than a couple of hours to decipher just how much of a “Google killer” it is, it does offer some new features…

Dell Sees 63% Income Drop

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delldude
Dude, you’re gettin’ a downturn. Dell’s income fell 63 percent in Q1, from $784 million to $290 million. Stocks are slightly above analyst expectations, but revenue is slightly below. Chairman and CEO Michael Dell speaks of a “powerful replacement cycle, with virtualization and managed services playing larger roles in what customers want and Dell provides.” That’s corporate jargon for “people…

DealCrave: Dell Studio 17″ Entertainment Notebook

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studio17-1
Trying to stay under a $600 PC budget but can’t wait for the affordable ultrathins or ultrapowerful netbooks? Woot’s got a way out with a $549 Dell 17-inch Studio notebook. Built for entertainment, the refurbished Dell Studio 1737 includes a 2 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor, 4 GB of RAM, a 320 GB hard drive, a DVD player and burner, a webcam and Vista Home Premium installed. There’s also an…

HP Goes Low With New Netbooks

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With HP losing profits, it certainly makes sense to focus on the segment of the tech industry that’s actually doing well. Two new variants of HP’s Mini series are on the way, including one model breaks the $300 barrier. The new Mini 110s are a lot like their predecessors, but you can add a widescreen display and optional Broadcom Crystal HD Enhanced Video Accelerator for watching…

Lenovo’s New IdeaPads and IdeaCentre Won’t Break the Bank

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lenovou350
Lenovo IdeaPad U350 and G550 – Marking its territory in the upcoming battle over the ultra-thin, ultra-cheap, better-than-netbook PCs, Lenovo announced the IdeaPad U350 and G550. The former (pictured) has a 13.3-inch display with ambient light sensing, a 1.4 GHz Core 2 Solo or two less powerful options, a 500 GB hard drive, up to 8 GB of DDR3 RAM, a GMA 4500M or 4500 MHD…

HP Loses 17% of Profits, Job Cuts Next

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Stories of tech layoffs were a dime a dozen earlier this year, but there’s been some hope lately that it’ll all turn around soon. If HP is any indication, that’s not the case. The company’s profits fell 17 percent in the second quarter, and now it will slash 2 percent of the workforce, or roughly 6,420 people. As the New York Times notes, HP makes a pretty wide variety of products, so its…

MECO: It’s Your Tech In a Box

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0 (97)
[youtube G7iFSxAGei8 570 380] Chances are your computer and your home entertainment center have irreconcilable differences. The latter wants to be out there, the life of the party. The former is an ugly mass of plastic or aluminum, but it can do so much with the Internet and digital content. If you’ve got $4,350 to $4,950 in liquidity, the MECO (short for Media Core) might be your answer. On…

Dell Giving Android Netbook a Try

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mini10-front
Around here, we see enough carefully-timed press releases and slowly trickling droplets of information that it’s worth a laugh when a company’s spot gets blown up. So here we have a Dell netbook that runs on Google’s Android operating sytem, being announced by a company responsible for the porting of Flash Lite onto the computer. That Bsquare then tried to pull the press release in hopes that…

Botnet Hacked for Good: A Glance Into Information Stealing

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torpigbotnet
Stolen passwords, credit card information and personal e-mails were in abundance at a botnet hacked by University of California Santa Barbara researchers earlier this year. The Torpig botnet, like many others, quietly infects Windows computers and harvests personal and financial information. In a project intended to assess the damage, the researchers took over the botnet for just one hour, and…

PeeWee Tablet Resists Drops and Spills

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Have you ever been in a restaurant and thought the kids menu looked more appetizing than the adult offerings? That’s how I feel about the PeeWee, which looks pretty great despite its kid-centric design and features. The PC has a ten-inch touch screen and a swiveling display, but also includes parental lock software and a bundle of other age-targeted childrens’ programs and games. All it really…

Jobs Still at Apple, Large Tablet Coming

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Good news for people who love Steve Jobs: Apple’s head honcho may be ill and out of the public spotlight, but his influence is still felt at the company as he works from home. While COO Tim Cook handles the day-to-day, Jobs weilds a heavy hand on product development, including the newest OS for the iPhone. Talking to unnamed insiders, the Wall Street Journal says this work includes development…

TechCrunch Tablet Leaked, Own Medicine Administered

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Call me a curmudgeon, but when a technology blog makes its own tech products, isn’t that a conflict of interest for covering competitors? Either way, TechCrunch is getting a feel for its subjects’ woes now that photos of the prototype TechCrunch Tablet are in the wild. Gizmodo spotted a photo from founder Michael Arrington’s posterous account, and CrunchGear in turn released a set of new…

Acer All-In-Ones Shown Off

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acerez1600
That’s it, slim and sexy all-in-ones, stroke my tech prediction ego. The latest pair to be strutted about comes from Acer. First, we’ve got the eMachines EZ1600 (pictured), in silver or black, with an 18.5-inch screen with up to 720p resolution, an Intel Atom N270 processor with 945GSE chipset, 2 slots of SO DIMM memory, up to 160 GB in hard drive space, DVD-RW, Wi-Fi and a card reader. The…

DBeat Portable DJ Console Taking Pre-Orders

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dbeat
Let’s see, a full-featured version of Ableton Live inside a 20-pound aluminum casing with a touch screen and a plethora of buttons and knobs? No, I’m not surprised by the $4,000 price tag. Still, you’ve got to admire Open Labs’ work here. The DBeat features a 12-inch touch screen and integrated trackball, plus drum pads, a DJ crossfader and an iPod-compatible cradle. On the software side,…

Apple Netbook Pic is So Good, It’s Probably Fake

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macbookminirussia
So we like to dream. You can’t blame us for indulging, so now we’re doing it again. Russian magazine “mobi” somehow got the scoop on Apple’s alleged netbook, with photos to boot. We’ve even got a bunch of specs to go along with it. The so-called Macbook Mini will include an LED-powered 10.4-inch screen in 1280×768 resolution, running on a 1.83GHz processor with 1MB L2 cache. There’s 2 GB of…

“701 Jewelry” Chooses Bling Over Function

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701jewelry1
Could this be the world’s most expensive pc?  Sure, the “701 Jewelry” from Moneual is the world’s most expensive “jewelry computer,” but how well can it run Crysis? The Intel Core 2 Due processor and ATI Radeon HD 4000 GPU can probably handle the task, but good luck seeing anything on that 7-inch screen. Chances are you’ll be distracted anyway by the 3,554 Swarovski Signature crystals that…

GPS Enabled Inhalers About to Hit the Market?

It’s a little friend asthmatics know all too well: the faithful, tiny, inhaler. Sometimes quite literally a life saver, most asthma sufferers have one and go through three or four a year. Now, in addition to allowing them to breathe, a scientist wants to use them to figure out why we get asthma in the first place.

How? With GPS units on inhalers!

It’s not as crazy as it sounds. The inhalers, which would also have a WiFi unit, would record location and time of use every time they were used, and send the information to a central server.

For the patient, it helps them and their doctor figure out what the patient might be doing to aggravate their asthma, or certain times and locations that might trigger an attack.

For the epidemiologists, it gives them a more detailed look at what parts of the country have the most asthma attacks, at what times, and in what conditions. Basically, they could get a better handle on what triggers attacks and how to fight it off.

There’s a lot of potential here to get insight into what triggers asthma and why. Of course, you still have to convince the people buying inhalers to shell out for what amounts to a bottle of steroids with an antenna on it, but one step at a time.

Vacuum Tube Chess Set Makes Tesla Proud

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Vacuum Tubes may have been a cornerstone in developing electronics, but for our purposes here, they make a sweet chess board. The “Chess Set For Tesla,” by Paul Fryer, uses 32 vacuum tubes and 64 plugs to ensure that those pieces don’t tip over during play. And of course, they light up, sohwing the type of piece on top. As some Dvice commenters noted, this is probably an impractical board, as the tubes would likely get too hot to handle unless you’re playing in the northern reaches of Russia. That doesn’t make it any less awesome from afar. [Make Blog via Dvice]

On-Time Clock Always Runs Fast

Finally, confirmation that other people set clocks ahead to avoid running late. The trick is to fool yourself into perpetual confusion, never quite knowing what time it really is. Fabrica’s Tak Cheung has designed a clock whose minute hand is always bent forward by a few minutes. One problem though: surf to On-Time’s product page and you’ll learn right away that the clock runs exactly three minutes fast, ruining the mystery. But what happens if you set this clock ahead by an additional amount? Total chaos, followed by a tear in the fabric of the space-time continuum. Maybe that’s why there’s no word on pricing or availability. [Fabrica via The Awesomer]

The H20 Concept Filter Recycles Urine for Drinking

The H20 Concept Filter Recycles Urine for Drinking

“You can’t pee into a Mr. Coffee and get Taster’s Choice,” Dana Carvey once said in a Ross Perot accent, referring to that famous drink-your-own scene in Waterworld. Actually, though, he’s wrong. The H20 concept filter uses Activated Carbon to remove the color and taste of the urine, and a tiny membrane filters out viruses and bacteria. Clean water is squeezed from a spilling spout at the bottom of the device. Simple as that, although cooling mechanism would be welcome considering the warmth of your own bodily fluids. Keep in mind, though, that urine is already sterile, so if you’re really in a jam, there’s always  the Bear Grylls method. [Yanko Design via Dvice]

Nintendo DS, iPhones Play in Gadget Orchestra

With the help of a Belkin Rockstar multi headphone splitter, one intrepid DJ has created a tapestry of digital sounds using a Nintendo DS Lite running Electroplankon, a DSi running Korg DS-10, an iPhone, an iPod Touch and a Kaossilator. The result is, well, meh. But think of the possibilities. I’d love to see what a talented chiptune artist like Nullsleep could do with an elaborate setup of Game Boys, and even an average listener might have fun mixing in and out of different iPods at a party. At $20 for the splitter, it certainly beats splurging on an expensive mixer. [via YouTube]

Visualizing Flickr: Web 2.0 as “The World’s Eyes”

When uploading to Flickr, users set tags, locations and other data– upon which an enterprising group of MIT researchers have built a project called “The World’s Eyes”. Now exhibited in the Design Museum in Barcelona, “Los Ojos Del Mundo” tracks photographers both local and tourist throughout their photographic adventures in Spain. As described by MIT’s SENSEable City Lab:

When posting photos online, users of the photo sharing platform Flickr transmit to the world their perspective of a place or event through the lens of a digital camera. Each digital photo file codes both the time when that photo was taken and the location it captures. Analyzing this information allows us to follow the trail that each Flickr photographer travels through Spain. (Un)photographed Spain maps thousands of these public, digital footprints over one year. As photos overlap in certain locations, they expose the places that attract the photographer’s gaze . In contrast, the absence of images in other locations reveal the unphotographed spaces of a more introverted Spain.

The result is a visually stunning display of the collective photographers’ view of Spain. Where and when do these photographs take place? What objects and locations are the most photogenic? We salute the work of MIT’s SENSEable CITY, as the art captured by Flickr photographers has been visualized into collective art from 30,000 feet. [MIT via datavisualization.ch]

French Police Save Millions With Ubuntu, OpenOffice

Solving budget crises at the local level may not be so complicated after all, if the French Gendarmerie Nationale police force is any indication. By switching to open source software, such as the Ubuntu operating system and OpenOffice instead of Windows and Microsoft Office, the force has saved roughly €50 million since 2004. The best quote comes from Lt. Colonel Xavier Guimard: “Moving from Microsoft XP to Vista would not have brought us many advantages and Microsoft said it would require training of users,” he said. “Moving from XP to Ubuntu, however, proved very easy. The two biggest differences are the icons and the games. Games are not our priority.” But what about those sweet, sweet icons? No matter, the department says its budget dropped by 70 percent by switching to open source, and it’s obviously an approach they’d like to continue in the future. The entire organization should be running on Linux by 2015. My editor, an open source junkie, is probably ecstatic. [via Ars Technica]

Vacuum Tube Chess Set Makes Tesla Proud

Vacuum Tubes may have been a cornerstone in developing electronics, but for our purposes here, they make a sweet chess board. The “Chess Set For Tesla,” by Paul Fryer, uses 32 vacuum tubes and 64 plugs to ensure that those pieces don’t tip over during play. And of course, they light up, sohwing the type of piece on top. As some Dvice commenters noted, this is probably an impractical board, as the tubes would likely get too hot to handle unless you’re playing in the northern reaches of Russia. That doesn’t make it any less awesome from afar. [Make Blog via Dvice]

World’s Brightest Single LED Flashlight

legion2-2

742 Lumens– that’s what you’ll be cutting through the shroud of night with when you’re using a Neofab Legion II.  While that number may not mean a lot to the layman, we can sum it up in one statement: this is the world’s brightest single LED flashlight. In addition to sheer brightness, the Legion II features single-finger switching for both on/off and multi-level dimming and new 4-layer PCB circuit board. Details like teflon bearings in the control ring keep this flashlight operating velvet-smooth. The Legion II was produced in a very limited first batch of 30. While the $295 might seem steep,  this is sure to be the coolest flashlight at the campsite. A less expensive, more mass produced aluminum version is also available for $179. The flashlight operates on 3 18650 lithium ion cells. [CPF Marketplace]

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