You've bought computer parts online, right? If you have, then we're sure you've experienced the Herculean ordeal of trying to free a delicate little part (say, a memory card) from its nigh-unbreakable PVC prison. Well, today Amazon has shown that they feel our pain, announcing a new initiative to eventually offer all their products with less obnoxious, extraneous packaging.
The initiative extends beyond tech stuff and beyond just PVC blister packs. The retail giant says that the plan won't just save our fingers, but the environment too. For instance, the press release says that for a single toy pirate ship, the new packaging "eliminates 36 inches of plastic-coated wire ties, 1,576.5 square inches of printed corrugated package inserts and 36.1 square inches of printed folding carton materials. Also eliminated are 175.25 square inches of PVC blisters, 3.5 square inches of ABS molded styrene and two molded plastic fasteners."
For right now Amazon's only going to be offering the new packaging on items from certain sourcces, like Microsoft and Transcend, but says "our vision is to offer our entire catalog of products in Frustration-Free Packaging."
Sounds pretty good, right? Do you think we can expect other retailers to follow suit? Let us know after the break.
For many of us, the idea of building your own laptop seems pretty farfetched. But OCZ is looking to change all of that with a recently announced15” DIY gaming notebook. The notebook will be based on Intel’s Centrino 2 processor and ATI’s Radeon HD3650 integrated graphics. According to OCZ, these will “provide a premium gaming experience that lets gamers power through all of today's most advanced and graphic-intensive games and applications with DirectX 10.1 compatibility.”
“At OCZ, empowering the enthusiast end-user in the mobile gaming space is an exciting opportunity for us, and with the powerful technology found in our latest Intel Centrino 2 based notebook we are again at the forefront of this growing market,” states Ryan Edwards, Director of Product Management, in OCZ’s the press release. “With OCZ DIY notebooks, end-users have complete control of the cost/performance ratio of key components, giving consumers the opportunity to personalize a true gaming and multi-tasking powerhouse notebook by using a validated component list and our easy to follow step-by-step manual included with every DIY package.”
While the notebook isn’t one that you’ll be building from the ground up, there are plenty of great options to give it a DIY feel. In the box you’ll get the case of the machine, which features a 15” screen, optical drive, and motherboard while the HDD (or SSD), memory and processor are your call. Thanks to some conveniently placed covers, all it takes to install the components is a screwdriver a little bit of know-how. OCZ even provides a catalog of components that work in each slot, so you’ll have a short list of parts to choose from when deliberating on what to use.
For true DIY’ers, this isn’t much to concern yourself with. But if you’re someone looking for a way to get your feet wet in the DIY scene (and it truly is the place to be), this isn’t a bad place to start. Follow the simple instructions and the fundamentals of building a PC are all yours.
Recently YouTube's really been ramping up its efforts to bring viewers a more cinematic online-video-viewing experience, a trend that continues as they bring home all the sophistication of foreign cinema with a new auto-translate features for subtitles. Ok, maybe that's a bit of an exaggeration. After all, machine translation being what it is, it's not particularly likely that you'll get more then a bare-bones understanding of what's going on, but at least that's better than nothing.
Of course, the functionality will only be available for videos which have had subtitles or captions uploaded with YouTube's recently-added caption feature, which is currently only a tiny percent of the videos online.The YouTube blog explains how to use the feature: "To get a translation for your preferred language, move the mouse over the bottom-right arrow, and then over the small triangle next to the CC (or subtitle) icon, to see the captions menu. Click on the "Translate..." button and then you will be given a choice of many different languages."
What do you think of the feature? Is it just another gimmick, or is it going to open YouTube up to greater cross-cultural participation? Let us know after the jump.
AMD’s logo isn’t the only green thing around their offices. For the eighth year in a row the chip maker has announced an Annual Global Climate Protection Plan to keep with their current trends of cutting down on their greenhouse gas emissions, and improving their manufacturing process.
AMD’s been keeping good on their promises too. They’ve been able to exceed their commitments from 2002-2007 by reducing their greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent and their normalized energy consumption by 30 percent. Not bad!
They’re even looking to report on their “Scope 3” gas emissions. Scope 3 emissions are any and all emissions that are associated with supply chain, product distribution and employee business travel. How they’re planning to do so isn’t detailed, but so far they’ve done a top-notch job, so there’s little doubt that they’ll have any issues with this.
According to Dirk Meyer, president and chief executive officer of AMD, “By continuing to expand and share AMD’s climate change strategy and performance metrics with the general public, governments, suppliers, industry groups, and the scientific community, AMD is enabling others to benefit from our experiences as we learn from theirs. Transparency and collaborative innovation are hallmarks of AMD’s approach to global climate protection, and represent a fusion of our efforts married to the industry’s best practices, such as supply chain accountability.”
TGDaily delivers a slideshow of Windows 7's new and improved features, including improvements to the desktop, media playback, file management, hardware support, networking, security, applets, and tops off the tour with a look at IE8 and Windows Live applets. To go straight to the features you're most curious about, join us after the jump.
The World Series might be over (congrats Philly fans), but baseball fever is apparently sweeping through France in the form of a "three strikes" copyright enforcement proposal gaining ground in the country's Senate. The pitch is this: Get caught downloading illegal content a first time and receive an email from the ISP with a warning. A second strike earns a written letter via snail mail, and a third strike means you're out. Of course, in baseball striking out is only temporary until the next at-bat, and for internet surfers caught breaking the law three times, they'd have to wait a year before having their internet connection turned back on.
The controversial legislation is receiving widespread support with a cross-party vote showing 297 in favor of the new law and only 16 voting against. That leaves it up to the French National Assembly to vote on and decide the proposal's fate. If it should pass, the French government could find itself at odds with the European Parliament, who earlier this year shot down the notion of cutting off repeat offenders.
Think this type of legislation could ever fly in the U.S.? Hit the jump and post your thoughts.
In a first for Alienware, the company has introduced a CrossFireX-capable gaming notebook for mobile gamers looking to pack some added heat (figuratively, though likely literally as well) in time for the holiday gaming season. Wealthy fraggers can outfit the new M17 with a pair of ATI's Mobility Radeon HD 3870 videocards for plenty of pixel-pushing power on the notebook's 17-inch WXGA+ or optional WUXGA widescreen display.
"By incorporating the all-out performance of CrossFireX graphics and quad-core processing into Alienware's award-winning notebook lineup," says Frank Azor, executive vice-president for Alienware's Product and Marketing Group, "the M17 delivers an impressive feature set at a price point that doesn't break the bank."
Gamers can also double up on storage with up to 640GB of hard drive space in a RAID 0 array (2x320GB), or up to 1TB in RAID 0 for those willing to drop down to a 5400RPM spindle speed (2x500GB), enough to hold 250,000 songs according to Alienware. Other specs and options include Intel Core 2 Duo, Quad, and Extreme processor support, PM45 chipset, up to 4GB of DDR3 memory, RAID 1 support, ATSC HDTV tuner, Blu-ray optical drive, three USB 2.0 ports, eSATA port, WiFi, and other goodies.
The hardware comes wrapped in a "Stealh Black" soft matte finish bearing Alienware's logo and trademark aesthetic flair. But the real surprise is in the price. A base configuration starts at a comparatively modest $1,400, with less than a $2,000 investment required for a configuration consisting of a Core 2 Duo processor, dual-videocards, and 3GB of DDR3 memory on a 1920x1200 HD display.
Mozilla's open-source Firefox browser continues to gain ground in the browser wars in what can be considered a major uphill battle. Firefox has flirted with a steady 20 percent market share in the past, and according to Net Applications, October has been kind to the configurable browser, which settled in at 19.97 percent. That number represents a 0.51-point jump over September and is a record high for Mozilla.
Meanwhile, Microsoft's Internet Explorer slipped again last month, continuing its trend as having the fastest declining market share out of the six most popular browsers. But far from being a free fall of sorts, IE's combined share nestled in at a still very dominant 71.52 percent, down from 71.27 percent one month prior. That puts IE at a 4.2-point drop for the year, compared to Firefox's 2.99-point gain.
It will be interesting to see what kind of effect Google's Chrome browser may have on the top two contenders. Currently, Chrome only accounts for a 0.74 percent slice of the browser pie (down from 0.78 percent), but that could change if Google follows through with adding extension support.
Hit the jump and tell us how you see the browser wars shaking out in 2009 and beyond.
It can be argued that Asus pioneered the netbook market with its Eee PC line, much in the same way Apple stormed the MP3 front with its iPod. And like the iPod, a whole slew of complimentary products have been released with the Eee PC in mind, including a cup holder car mount. But despite the popularity of Asus' Eee PC line, the company may find itself playing second fiddle to Acer when it comes to shipments.
Acer, who announced its Aspire one netbook in June of this year, said shipments by year's end could reach 6 million units, which would be enough to outpace Asus. By comparison, Asus has set a goal of shipping 5 million Eee PCs, a distant second for a company that has had a 6-month head start.
"The netbook segment is growing very nicely," said Acer CEO Gianfranco Lanci during the company's third quarter investor's conference in Taipei on Friday.
That might be the understatement of the year. It's been reported that the worldwide PC market is growing on the strength of netbooks, with mini-notebook shipments reaching 80.6 million units in the Q3 2008. The growing segment shows no signs of slowing down, and Acer looks to cash in with anywhere from 12 million to 15 million Aspire one shipments in 2009, according to Lanci.
Will Asus lose its lead in 2009? Hit the jump and tell us your prediction.
Taking a page from the RIAA -- whose umbrella of accusations have included suing an 83-year-old deceased woman (going for a default judgment, perhaps?) -- Atari has gone on the offensive by sending out letters threatening legal action against those who are believed to be downloading and sharing games online.
Among the recipients are Gill (age 54) and Ken Murdoch (age 66), a pair of senior citizens residing in Scotland who are being accused of stealing the game Race 07. To avoid legal action, they've been asked to pay what amounts to $815USD. The only problem? The Murdoch's claim they don't play videogames.
"We do not have, and have never had, any computer game or sharing software," the couple said. "We did not even know what 'per to peer' was until we received the letter."
According to DailyTech, it appears Atari has hired anti-piracy firm Logistep to round up IP addresses of those it believes are pirating videogames. But just as the RIAA has found out, sweeping allegations based on IP addys alone can sometimes lead to false positives, and with it a public outcry. With regards to the Murdochs, Atari dropped the case in the wake of negative publicity, but its legal campaign marches on.
Should Atari receive the same scorn the RIAA has received? Hit the jump and sound off.