Microsoft has released an updated technology preview of its cool Deep Zoom Composer tool for Silverlight 2. As we reported back in July, Deep Zoom Composer gives you the ability to display multiple high-resolution thumbnails, zoom in for a closeup, and pan back again. You can use Deep Zoom Composer to create mosaics (as in our original story), or to bring a new level of interactivity to online collections (as the Hard Rock Cafe has done).
If you want to give it a try, install the latest version of Silverlight 2 beta first, then install the Deep Zoom Composer technology preview 0.9.0005. Deep Zoom Composer runs on Windows XP SP2 or SP3 and Windows Vista, and requires a 2GHz Intel or AMD processor, at least 1GB of RAM, and a Microsoft DirectX 9-capable video card with at least 256MB of video memory.
See the Teaching Ideas and Resources blog at MSDN for more information about this and other imaging tools from Microsoft.
Join us after the jump for your comments, and don't forget to share links to your creations!
It doesn't matter that most power users would rather use a desktop replacement notebook in place of a lower cost (and much longer lasting, in terms of battery life) netbook, demand is hot and Asus has plans to stoke the coals. Asus Chairman Jonney Shih sees his company shipping 20 million laptops in 2009, which would mean increasing its output by 77 percent.
Should Asus meet its lofty goal, it would become one of the world's top four laptop makers. Not all of the laptops Asus sells are low-cost units or ultraportables, but many of them are and the market for netbooks doesn't appear to be slowing down anytime soon. According to iSupply, the global notebook PC market will grow 20 percent next year, with the netbook segment twice as active with a 55 percent growth rate. That puts Asus in good position, who's Eee PC line can be argued sports a name brand recognition advantage over its competition.
Coders, start your engines. The long awaited release of the Android source code has come to an end, thanks to the Android Open Source Project. The announcement, which was made just yesterday, hopes to potentially influence the future of mobile devices as a whole. Pretty ambitious!
“Even if you're not planning to ship a mobile device any time soon, Android has a lot to offer,” writes Dave Bort (are they out of license plates in the gift shop?) on Androiod’s blog, “Interested in working on a speech-recognition library? Looking to do some research on virtual machines? Need an out-of-the-box embedded Linux solution? All of these pieces are available, right now, as part of the Android Open Source Project, along with graphics libraries, media codecs, and some of the best development tools I've ever worked with.” He continues to encourage anyone with a great idea for a new feature to simply add it. Given the nature of the open source project, anyone can influence Android.
Some big ups have to go out to Google on this one, making Andrioid perhaps one of the easiest development tools to acquire. Considering it’s free to license and now the entire source code is available to anyone that wants it, perhaps their dream of world domination is only a few developers away.
Do you do a lot of uploading? If so, chances are high it's of the the P2P variety, according to a new study. You'll have to take the research with a grain of salt, as the company who performed the study, Sandvine, is the same one that manufacturered the hardware for Comcast's now infamous intentional throttling.
Be that as it may, Sandvine reports that while P2P traffic accounts for 22 percent of downstream bandwidth, upstream remains much more busy at just over 61 percent. A distant second is web traffic, which only accounts for 17 percent of bandwidth used, according to the report.
"Bulk bandwidth applications like P2P are on all day, everyday and are unaffected by changes to network utilization," says Dave Caputo, Sandvine's co-founder. "This reinforces the importance of protecting real-time applications that are sensitive to jitter and latency during times of peak usage."
Do the numbers surprise you? Hit the jump and let us know.
With rumors swirling of performance DDR3 memory not playing nice with Core i7 platforms due to voltage requirements, it's not a bad idea to wait for specifically compatible kits to emerge before upgrading your RAM. In addition to getting the voltage right, upcoming triple-channel kits will ship with three sticks of RAM to take advantage of the new architecture.
First out of the gate with a line of triple-channel kits is Corsair, who today announced no less than six high performance kits designed for Core i7. These include:
6GB kit 1866MHz Dominator with Airflow fan (TR3X6G1866C9DF - $475
3GB kit 1866MHz Dominator with Airflow fan (TR3X3G1866C9DF) - $250
6GB kit 1600MHz Dominator (TR3X6G1600C8D) - $300
3GB kit 1600MHz Dominator (TR3X3G1600C8D) - $175
6GB kit 1333MHz (TR3X6G1333C9) - $230
3GB kit 1333MHz (TR3X3G1333C9) - $120
Latency timings and voltage information is still trickling out for many of the kits. Corsair's press release indicates the kits are available now, though we've been unable to spot them in the wild. We imagine the usual culprits (Newegg, ZipZoomFly, TigerDirect, etc.) will show stock very soon.
Circuit City Stores Inc. might close 150 stores and opt for job cuts to stall its march towards bankruptcy, according to a WSJ report. Thousands of people might receive their termination letters, if there is any truth in this report. The retailer’s shares shot up by 20% on the back of this report.
Although the company’s spokesman Jim Babb refused to comment on the report, he admitted that the company was “assessing the productivity of our asset base.” With no signs of the ongoing financial storm relenting in the near future, the holiday season might not bring any relief for Circuit City – and its competitors. Apparently, the mess it is currently ensconced in has left Circuit City few choices.
It's been a long and arduous wait, but enthusiasts who have dreamed of pairing multiple Nvidia videocards in an SLI configuration on an Intel chipset-based motherboard will soon walk in a silicon field of dreams. No longer the topic of speculation, Nvidia has officially announced that it has licensed its SLI technology to several top-tier motherboard manufacturers - Asus, EVGA, MSI, Gigabyte, and DFI - for upcoming motherboards based on Intel's X58 chipset.
"Asus is bringing many motherboards into production with support for Nvidia SLI technology, and a motherboard worthy of mention is the new Asus Rampage II Extreme which is based on Intel's upcoming X58 chipset," said Joe Hsieh, GM at Asus Motherboard Business Unit.
SLI-licensed motherboards have entered the final production stage and will launch concurrently with Intel's Core i7 processors next month. According to the press release, certified boards will include both those using the Nvidia nForce 200 SLI processor, as well as motherboards designed to run SLI natively through a licensing and certification program. And for you Crysis junkies, look for support for 3-way SLI configurations as well.
With all the hoopla surrounding Intel's Centrino 2 platform, it might be easy to forget that AMD is also a player in the mobile market. But who hasn't forgotten is MSI, who just released a pair of new gaming notebooks to the U.S. market with CPU support for AMD's Turion X2 Ultra dual-core mobile processors.
On the lighter end of the spec sheet, MSI's 15.4" GX630 utilizes Nvidia's MCP77 chipset with support for up to 4GB of DDR2-800 RAM. Gaming duties are handled by Nvidia's GeForce 9600M GT with a 512MB frame buffer, and two speakers tackle audio chores.
Depsite its Nvidia-centric name, the 17" GT735 runs on AMD's RX781+SB700 chipset, also with support for up to 4GB of DDR2-800 RAM. That also means an ATI based videocard, specifically the Mobility Radeon HD3850 along with 512MB of GDDR3. Audio gets an upgrade as well with four speakers plus a subwoofer.
Both notebooks boast a 320GB SATA hard drive, DVD burner (optional Blu-ray), 802.11b/g/n, webcam, an HDMI port, a 4-in-1 card reader, eSATA, and two (GX630) or three (GT735) USB 2.0 ports. But while the specs may seem standard fare, both machines will come with the option to overclock by way of a button, which MSI claims will increase the speed of the CPU by as much as 15 percent.
The new notebooks are available now from several online e-tailers, including Amazon.com, Buy.com, ZipZoomFly, and Mwave for between $1050 to $1115 (GX630) and $1230 to $1300 (GT735).
The device includes a 312MHz Marvell PXA270 processor, Linux 2.4.19, full QWERTY/AZERTY keyboard, an 8GB SD card slot ,Opera Mini 4.1 internet browser and 2.8 inch screen. The iKIT has inbuilt WiFi and Bluetooth capabilities, and supports HSDPA over USB. It has a standby time of 250 hours and power-up time of up to 3 hours.
The suggested retail price of roughly $170 makes it far more affordable than an Apple iPhone – a fact specifically called to attention by IMOVIO. However, practicality of such a product is just as important as the price, if not more, and will play a vital role in iKIT’s case as well.
The wait is over. Today, LucasArts and BioWare finally force unleashed the first details on their joint MMO production, and it sounds like the best thing that could possibly come from Star Wars and gaming's unholy union aside from a Jar-Jar killing sim where you blast Jar-Jars with a Jar-Jar launcher*.
The game will take place a few hundred years after KOTOR 2 caught fire and skidded off a cliff to an eventual -- and undeniably painful -- halt, and will cast you as a jedi, sith, or something else that you probably won't bother with. As with any BioWare title, MMOTOR will focus on story foremost, spicing up the MMO genre with BioWare's top-notch storytelling prowess.
And oh will there be story content. According to BioWare president Greg Zeschuk and CEO Ray Muzyka, the game isn't KOTOR 3, "it's KOTOR 3, 4, 5, 6, etc. There's that much to it."
"It's a whole galaxy. It's a galaxy of Star Wars," they added.
In order to make such an ambitious story possible, The Old Republic will saddle you with single-player RPG-esque companion characters. You can change and manipulate them, and they can assist you throughout your adventures. As such, the game will "allow players to carve out their own epic stories," with your actions affecting the entire game world, as well as your characters' morality.
Even crazier, every class and faction configuration will have its own storyline. Lead writer on the project Daniel Ericson even claimed that his latest progeny could feasibly be played like a single-player RPG. There's that much story.
“If you’re a BioWare fan, you’re going to get everything you ever imagined from an extension of KOTOR,” he said.
We couldn't want this any more if it came with a ticket to beautiful women and infinite money island**. How about you?
*The alt fires are lightsabers and Hayden Christensen.