Subject: General Tech | July 21, 2009 - 12:01 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
80 column punch cards were used to store programs back in the days before 1TB HDDs were common, and that is exactly what took Apollo 11 to the Moon. The majority of the ground based programming done previous to launch was in Fortran and compiled on an IBM 360 with an huge 1MB of memory, up from the 64K IBM7904 used in Apollo 1. Once in the air and sporting what is essentially hard coded software, there was no way to change the programs; the only control the ground had was to change the order in which they ran, allowing for adjustments in the flight path.
Subject: General Tech | July 20, 2009 - 03:43 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tweaktown received an odd package containing the Zowie IO1.1 Professional Gaming bundle, a $90 set including a repainted Intellimouse, a large mousepad, extra feet for the mouse and a PS/2 adaptor. Can an optical mouse and a pad that is described as uncomfortable meet with your expectations, or are you just going to end up chafed? Here i
Subject: General Tech | July 20, 2009 - 12:35 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
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
Subject: General Tech | July 17, 2009 - 07:03 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
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.
Subject: General Tech | July 17, 2009 - 12:10 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
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.
Subject: General Tech | July 16, 2009 - 12:15 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
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.
Subject: General Tech | July 15, 2009 - 06:13 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
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.
Subject: General Tech | July 15, 2009 - 04:37 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
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
Subject: General Tech | July 15, 2009 - 12:52 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
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