I'm speaking, of course, of the privacy features that come native to the Windows operating system. Sure, you can tuck your special documents away in a private user folder, but that doesn't mean that your files have been secreted away forever. An industrious user with physical access to your machine can wreak havoc on your personal files, regardless of how much Windows tells you that they're safe from external abuse.
Change that. Beyond the cut of this week's freeware update are five applications that will enhance your ability to secret away that-which-you-don't-want-anyone-else-seeing. Does that involve encryption? Yes. But that's not the end-all be-all technique for hiding things on your computer. Depending on the amount of privacy you need, there are faster and easier solutions than merely locking down your entire drive using a 128-bit cipher.
Grab your Sherlock Holmes pipe. It's time to get cryptic.
Japanese researchers have made a major breakthrough that could prove to be a watershed in the development of flexible OLEDs. Scientists from the Center for Future Chemistry at Kyushu University in Fukuoka, Japan have concocted a “liquid-OLED.”
They have detailed their innovation in the latest issue of Applied Physics Letters. The “liquid-OLED” is named as such on account of its use of a liquid semiconductor layer. This latest technology could yield more pliant and reliable roll-up OLEDs compared to other technologies currently undergoing the rigors of testing and fine-tuning in other part of the world.
You can finally find Nvidia's dual-GPU GTX 295 videocards in stock at pretty much any e-tailer who carries the part, but if you've waited this long, you might want to consider holding out a few more months. According to the latest rumblings, Nvidia plans to replace the flagship part with a dual GT300 card.
News and rumor site Fudzilla claims to have confirmed the rumor, but other details, including exactly when it will ship, remain sparse. If all goes to plan, Nvidia might have a demo ready in late Q4 2009 and start shipping in January 2010, but that remains to be seen.
The new card will apparently be DirectX 11 compatible and built to run parallel processing CUDA, DirectX compute, or OpenCL. It will also go toe-to-toe with AMD's upcoming dual RV870 card.
Those who attended Quakecon 2009 (as well as those who follow AMD's blog) were able to get an early look at AMD's Catalyst 9.8 drivers, and sometime today, the company is expected to release them to the general public.
The new driver package comes with support for the Radeon HD 2000, HD 3000, and HD 4000 series while serving up support for OpenGL 3.1 extensions. AMD also claims several performance gains, including:
Up to 50 percent better performance in Battleforge DirectX 10/10.1
Up to 77 percent better performance in Company of Heroes (DX10)
Up to a 10 percent (dual CrossFireX) and 34 percent (quad CrossFireX) performance boost in Crysis (DX10)
Crysis Warhead DX10 performance of CrossFireX technology in dual mode improves up to 7 percent and quad mode up to 69 percent
Far Cry 2 DX10 performance of CrossFireX in dual mode improves up to 50 percent and quad mode up to 88 percent
Tom Clancy's H.A.W.X. DX10/10.1 performance of CrossFireX in dual mode improves up to 40 percent and quad mode up to 60 percent
UninginTropics OpenGL performance improvements of up to 20 percent
UningineTropics DX10 performance of CrossFireX in quad more improves up to 20 percent
World in Conflict DX10 performance improves up to 10 percent
If you don't feel like waiting for the drivers to show up on game.amd.com, you can grab them right here:
Perception is a funny thing. If you listen to Microsoft, Vista, despite its acknowledged shortcomings, has been a success story and the company has the sales numbers to prove it. But talk to the end users and you'll hear a very different opinion. The negative perception towards Vista remains so strong that thousands of XP users have continued to make do with a nearly decade old OS.
The good news for Microsoft is that those same users don't hold the same disdain for Windows 7 as they do for Vista, according to a survey conducted by PC World and Technologizer.com. The survey pinged nearly 5,000 Windows XP users to find out how they feel about their current OS, why they haven't moved to Vista, and what their thoughts are regarding Windows 7.
Over 25 percent of the respondents said they continue to use XP because Vista doesn't justify an upgrade, and out of those who have used Vista, over half indicated somewhat negative or very negative feelings towards it. Of those who have never touched Vista, about 80 percent said they have somewhat negative or very negative feelings towards the OS.
Those opinions haven't soured the perception of Windows 7. Out of those who have had a chance to play with a beta or RC of the upcoming OS, over 65 percent said they felt very positive or somewhat positive with their experience, and only about 10 percent reported feeling negative.
While you sit around and wait about another month for Intel's launch of Core i5 and new socket 1156-based Core i7 processors, PC builders living in China and Taiwan can already purchase the new parts, says news and rumor site DigiTimes. Citing un-named market sources, DigiTimes says Core i5 750, Core i7 860, and Core i7 870 processors along with P55-based motherboards are already available in small volumes in some retail channels in Taiwan and China, while the rest of us will have to wait until September 6.
Take these prices with a grain of salt, but at the current exchange rate, Core i5 750 (2.6GHz, *MB L3 cache) is selling for about $206. The Core i7 860 (2.8Ghz, 8MB L3 cache) comes to about $303, and the Core i7 860 (2.93GHz, 3MB L3 cache) is selling for around $575, the sources said.
On the motherboard front, P55-based boards from Gigabyte range anywhere from $165 to $280, with MSI is selling P55 boards for anywhere from $150 to $245 depending on features.
Imagine a microchip with the most beautiful blue eyes you've ever seen and absolutely no propensity towards disease. Now get that picture out of your head because it has nothing to do with what IBM is experimenting with.
IBM is, however, playing around with artificial DNA nanostructures, or "DNA origami," as a way to develop even smaller chips at cheaper prices, according to a paper published on Sunday in the journal of Nature Nanotechnology.
"This is the first demonstration of using biological molecules to help with processing in the semiconductor industry," IBM research manager Spike Narayan said in an interview with Reuters. "Basically, this is telling us that biological structures like DNA actually offer some very reproducible, repetitive kinds of patterns that we can actually leverage in semiconductor processes."
Narayan went on to say that if the DNA origami process scales to production level, manufacturers could look at spending less than a million dollars on polymers, DNA solutions, and heating implements, rather than hundreds of millions of dollars on complex tools.
Sounds great, but the technology is still a ways off. It will be take at least another decade of experimentation and testing, Narayan says.
Whether you lost your license for racking up too many points for speeding and reckless driving or just can't stand to be anywhere else other than behind the wheel, Logitech has you covered. The gaming peripheral company today announced the G27 Racing Wheel, which it says is "designed to deliver the definitive sim racing experience."
For three Benjamins, the G27 will have you gripping tight corners and feeling the road courtesy of a dual-motor force feedback mechanism. A hand-stitched leather wheel helps justify the cost of admission, as does a six-speed gated shifter complimented by a new LED RPM/shift indicator. Other features include steel-constructed gas, brake, and clutch pedals, and more programmable buttons than the G25.
Logitech says the G27 will be available in the U.S. and Europe sometime in September and will work with both PCs and the Playstation 3.
Jammie Thomas is running out of options. Found guilty in 2007 of copyright infringement and ordered to pay $220,000 for willfully making available 24 songs via peer-to-peer, she now owes a whopping $1.92 million following a retrial earlier this year. Surely the Department of Justice would step in and find the nearly $2 million fine unconstitutional, right?
Wrong. According to ArsTechnica, the huge of amount of damages (Thomas ended up owing $80,000 per song) were not intended just to apply to big corporations, but also to "deter the millions of users of new media from infringing copyrights." The only time the DOJ would have a problem with a fine is if it become "so severe and oppressive as to be wholly disproportional to the offense and obviously unreasonable," something for which a $1.92 million fine for sharing 24 songs doesn't qualify.
"We are pleased the Administration has filed a brief supporting our position," an RIAA spokesperson told ArsTechnica. "Its views are consistent with the views of every previous Administration that has weighed in on this issue."
Singapore-based Suzuki Technology – not to be confused with its automobile-making namesake - has trotted out a 7-inch touchscreen netbook that can also double up as a tablet PC. Its 7-inch display can be folded in a manner so as to overlie the keyboard. The Neutron 701 MNI enters tablet PC mode once the screen is folded to conceal the keyboard.
The 701 MNI may not be for tetchy users as it features an Intel Atom Z520 1.33GHz processor, which is infamous for its lack of speed. Other notable specs include up to 4GB RAM, an Expresscard Slot, three USB 2.0 ports, 802.11b/g Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, a 1.3 MP webcam, and a quaint 56K modem. Suzuki still hasn’t divulged the price of the 701 MNI.