Avoid those :headscratch: moments

Subject: General Tech | July 20, 2009 - 12:35 PM |
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You are digging through your old tech closet and you come across a cable that seems vaguely familiar but you can't place it.  Worse, someone hands you an old PC from a system builder that has long gone extinct with some sort of bizarre looking PCI slot that has a very important and very dead expansion card in it.  Thanks to MAKE:Blog you can access the handy Computer Hardware Poster that will show what the cast majority of slots, sockets and assorted other hardware looks like.&nb

Source: MAKE: Blog

To the moon Alice!

Subject: General Tech | July 17, 2009 - 07:03 PM |
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PC users have entered a new state of power consciousness, something that is probably a good idea as some high end PCs probably use more energy than the sum of the rest of the appliances in the house in which it is situated.  Mind you, with the cost of a pair of dual GPU cards and an i7 965, the only appliances in said house may well be a beer fridge and a coffee maker. 

Everyone needs a $2000 hard drive

Subject: General Tech | July 17, 2009 - 12:10 PM |
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Starting next Tuesday, 320GB, 160GB and 80GB Intel SSDs will be on the market for those that can afford them.  They will be using 34nm NAND chips
which will mean several things, the most obvious of which is the large capacities.  These larger drives will also have better performance that drives with older process flash memory and may reduce the price.  As Intel 160GB drives currently sell for just over $4/GB or $650 so a doubling of price, plus a premium for the large size would present a prohibitive cost to most enthusiasts. 

Source: The Inquirer

As seen on TWiT.tv

Subject: General Tech | July 16, 2009 - 12:15 PM |
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Those of you who have seen last nights live podcast will have heard of the hardware and software problems with the Marvell chip implementation of 6.0Gbs SATA.  ASUS, Gigabyte and MSI are all either delaying boards or removing the chips and support for the new SATA standard altogether.  We heard from Marvell during the podcast and Ryan read their statement live.  You can see the text version here, discussing the issue and what legacy support of PATA might or might not have to do with the problems.

This Syren has a nice pair

Subject: General Tech | July 15, 2009 - 06:13 PM |
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MSI, feeling discontented with only having motherboards, laptops and mice has expanded their product line up to include speakers.  The MSI SyrenSpeaker Mini
2.0 are an awfully cute 50x50x50mm box shape and weigh in at only 170g, so they are perfect for a mobile system or your desk at work.  They won't stand up to a 7.1 surround sound system, but at a 1/10th of the cost, they really are not designed to.  Check them out at Verdis Reviews.

Petite PC accessory

Subject: General Tech | July 15, 2009 - 04:37 PM |
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The body of the EnerMax Aurora Micro Aluminum Keyboard is one solid piece of aluminium with matte black plastic keys with what Enermax claims to be 'Everlasting key top printing', in a compact form factor. 
This means that while it does keep the solidity of the design, anyone who finds that one-size-fits-all gloves do anything but fit are going to have troubles with the some of the tiny keys.  If you do have hands on the small

Dibs on the Marauder

Subject: General Tech | July 15, 2009 - 12:52 PM |
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FASA has released its MechWarrior IP and one of the original creators of the PC games, Jordan Weisman has started a new company called 42 Entertainment which will be reviving the franchise as a multiplayer game.  His plan is to have a CoD4 like perpetual world with an upgradeable skill set to ensure that those who spend a lot of time in a favourite Mech will be rewarded.  There are also hints that the skills will apply to weapons as well.  You can check out the teaser video and get some

Source: Offworld

Faster than a speeding RoadRunner

Subject: General Tech | July 15, 2009 - 12:25 PM |
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Source: Slashdot

I wasn't in my right mind

Subject: General Tech | July 14, 2009 - 11:52 AM |
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Pick up your tinfoil hats and keep a careful eye on anyone carrying around this book, because humans are getting much better at hacking the mind.  Simple things, like the defacing of the epilepsy support websites with flashing colours to trigger epileptic fits is nothing new; a chemical that seems to be able to produce permanent memory loss in rats is not.  Neural engineers have developed wireless interfaces allowing usage of computer and wheelchairs via direct brain control, though those devices are not conduciv

Source: Slashdot

It's ribbons all the way down

Subject: General Tech | July 13, 2009 - 11:43 AM |
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With the fun and easy to understand changes to the UI of the Microsoft Office Suite in the 2008 version still fresh in the minds of students and office workers everywhere, the release of Office 2010 is being looked at with a bit of trepidation.  Thanks to a bit of an early opening, you can catch screenshots and movies of the office at HEXUS.  Over at The Inquirer is a brief summary of the changes to Office and to Microsoft's business model, as

Source: The Inquirer

Have you hugged your Tesla coil lately?

Subject: General Tech | July 10, 2009 - 06:14 PM |
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The internet is great, bringing you a broad variety of information and entertainment, some of which you want to see and some of which you wish you could bleach out of your brain.  Either way, when the tap runs dry or even just starts to falter a little, it can be a real brain teaser trying to track down the problem

All in one, or all in none?

Subject: General Tech | July 10, 2009 - 02:16 PM |
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The AKAI AISS010 All-In-One Entertainment System claims to be able to handle any input, and the list of acceptable inputs is fairly impressive; MP3/iPod/CD/DVD/Up-sampled DVD/USB/SD Flash cards/FM radio/Karaoke along with a HDMI output for up-sampled DVDs.  Tweaktown put those claims to the test as well as checking on the quality of the sounds.  In the end it was hard for them to determine how well received this system will be, there are some who may find

Source: TweakTown

A Corsair is only as good as his word

Subject: General Tech | July 10, 2009 - 11:37 AM |
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Corsair has been in the news recently for two issues, the first is the hold that has been put on Elpida Hyper-based Dominator GT modules.  The
second is the relabelling of PSUs from 80+Gold to 80+Silver because not all units could reach the 87% efficiency under full load that is required in order to meet a Gold rating.  HEXUS sits down with them to discuss the difference 2% can make as well as alternatives to Elpida to get the Dominator GT modules into production again.

Source: Hexus

7 + 4 = FAST!

Subject: General Tech | July 9, 2009 - 12:21 PM |
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While you are still not going to see a PC capable of an instant on, SSD RAID performance on Windows 7 in quite spectacular.  In their testing of the instant on capability [H]ard|OCP discovered that you are much better off with a single drive to get the fastest boot times.  The converse is true for those looking for the best performance once booted up, the more drives the better.

Source: [H]ard|OCP

Deep thoughts, by Vint Cerf

Subject: General Tech | July 9, 2009 - 12:00 PM |
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Vint Cerf, Ray Kurzweil and Ray Merkle all spoke at a recent NASA event dealing with the near future of technology and the way it changes how those who use it interact with the world.  Vint Cerf touches on the future of the internet, social networks and how networks like Twitter, or whatever replaces it, will affect peoples lives.  Ray Kurzweil talks about consciousness and the implications of not being able to define or measure consciousness in any concrete manner.  Ray Merkle delved into the world of microbiological and nanotechnological self assembly, of which he is well acqu

Source: Slashdot

Are you a fan of overclocked video cards?

Subject: General Tech | July 8, 2009 - 06:59 PM |
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The Galaxy GTX 275 OC
that Ryan reviewed back in the beginning of June
, the one with with a 650 MHz core (vs. 633 MHz stock), a 1475 MHz shader (vs. 1404 MHz) and 1200 MHz memory (vs.

Breakin' the law ... breakin' the law!

Subject: General Tech | July 8, 2009 - 04:27 PM |
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If you want a fast, extremely sensitive gaming mouse, then you have to put up with a cord.  That's been the rule, until Razer decided to introduce the Mamba Wireless gaming mouse.  Even though it is wireless, this mouse provides 5,600 dpi of resolution, 1 ms latency and a 1,000 Hz polling rate.  You can even use it while recharging it, as it will function as a wired mouse while connected.  Could Hardware Secrets tell the differen

In GAR, the AI works for you

Subject: General Tech | July 8, 2009 - 12:28 PM |
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If someone was to talk to you about a game learning from the player, you might think back to games which claimed to adjust the difficulty on the fly depending on the players skills.  You might also remember not noticing it having any effect on the game.  In that case, the AI was working against the player, but in Galactic Arms Race, the AI is working with you.  It is a neural net that monitors your usage of weapons and evolves them according to your actions.  All the guns in the game are computer generated, as opposed to having stats coded into the game. 

Source: Slashdot

Feel the rays

Subject: General Tech | July 8, 2009 - 11:56 AM |
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Not that it has ever been mentioned before, but we at PC Perspective are very interested in the future of graphics in general and Ray Tracing in

Big sound from a small card

Subject: General Tech | July 7, 2009 - 03:56 PM |
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It might be stretching the point a bit to say that the Auzentech X-Fi Forte Low Profile
sound card
is the first designed for music, HTPCs and gaming, but it certainly has a talent with small form factor systems.  At barely 2" wide and 6" long, as well as lacking EMI shielding
the card looks minuscule
next to its bigger X-Fi brothers, a good sign for HTPC builders. 

Source: Overclock3D