Type "screensaver" into a Web search box - go ahead, I dare you. What you'll come across is a number of scamming, ad-filled, useless sites that care more about lining their own pockets with revenue than actually delivering you the goodies you want for sprucing up the look of your system's display. I can't help you much there. The appeal of a particular screensaver is, after all, in the eyes of its beholder. You might like flying toasters; I might like ports of OSX screensavers. There's little point in me trying to push my tastes on you via some freeware roundup.
That said, there are a number of interesting applications that can help you better manage your display. Regardless of whichever screensaver you choose to use--including none--the freeware tools listed below will let you best manipulate your screen to your liking. Enhance your daily computer use with increased energy-savings or prevent annoying interruptions to your media-watching, amongst other tricks. And, yes, you'll even be able to turn your screensaver on and off at a whim...
HP has been working on flexible displays for some time now, but it appears as though they may be a bit further along than we originally thought. The technology is still pretty far from ever being commercialized, but a recent presentation captured by the guys over at Hardware.info shows off one of the early working prototypes being touted around by top execs. They didn't actually show it in action, but the simple fact that you can roll it up gives it some serious geek cred.
HP claims that despite it's inherent flexibility, the future of the technology lies in making screens smaller and lighter than they are today. Anyone who has ever shoved a phone in their pocket would probably agree that a screen the consistency of paper is probably a bad idea, and we can't wait until more details are announced. Until then you'll just have to amuse yourself with the picture above, and the short video hosted on You Tube which you can check out after the jump.
Sure you can't dunk it in water, but it's the closest we've seen to the real deal in a flexible display.
Asus today added four new models to its Designo Series, including the MS248, MS238, MS228, and MS208. All four boast an eco-friendly, ultra-slim design with 16.5mm profiles and range in size from 20 inches to 20.3 inches.
On the lower end, the MS208 sports a 1600 x 900 screen resolution with a 5ms response time. The other three up the ante to a 1920 x 1080 resolution and a faster 2ms response time. The MS228 adds an HDMI audio-out port, while the MS238 and MS248 also include an earphone jack (for HDMI only).
Asus says all four units are easy on the environment, thanks in large part eschewing bulbs in favor of mercury-free LED backlit panels. According to Asus, the LED monitors reduce energy consumption levels by 45 percent, enough to reduce annual CO2 emissions by 23.6kg per year, the equivalent of planting 1.9 trees that can contribute two years worth of oxygen for a family of four.
What's that, non-Windows-7 users? You've never heard of the operating system's neat three-dimensional window organizer? Let's try it out together. Grab a copy of the operating system, do all that installation stuff, then hold down your Windows key and hit Tab when you're finally on your desktop. Presto - provided Aero's on, all of your open windows will shift out into a neat little three-dimensional display that you can quickly scroll through using your mouse wheel.
Of course, someone's made a Firefox addon to mimic this creative functionality. And while it might seem gimmicky at first glance, rest assured that you will be the coolest (and most organized) person on your block once you start showing off your brand-new way to keep tabs on your multiple browser... tabs.
Dell over the weekend added to its growing LCD monitor line by introducing a new 24-inch display, the G2410H. Boasting support for 1080p, Dell's latest display also comes with a few environmentally friendly bullet points.
Chief among them are several power saving features, including an ambient light sensor, Dell's PowerNap technology, Dynamic Dimming, and three "Energy Modes." The G2410H also comes equipped with an ultra efficient power supply, and is free of arsenic (glass only), mercury, polyvinyl chloride (packaging only), BFR, and CFR.
Dell says it designed the G2410H with up to a 20 percent slimmer panel. Other tech specs include a Twisted Nematic (TN) panel, 1,000:1 standard contrast ratio and 1,000,000:1 dynamic contrast ratio, 5ms response time, 0.277mm pixel pitch, and both VGA and DVI-D (with HDCP) connectors.
Let it not be said that I don't pay attention to the demands of the readers. No sooner did I wrap up another comparative analysis of three slammin' freeware applications for altering your desktop in new and unique ways then, well, you all talked. And talked. And talked.
That's not a bad thing, however. A number of you voiced support for your favorite applications and utilities that you use to radically transform the look of your traditional Windows desktop in some pretty awesome ways. It would be a shame to let these suggestions languish in the comments thread of an old article, however. So, this week, Freeware Files is all about you. I'll be featuring your suggestions for applications and showing people why they should consider your alternatives for giving their desktops a refreshed look.
Got it? Click the jump and let's check out what your peers are using to make their Windows desktops look amazing!
The message during CES was pretty clear: 3D is coming to the living room. Helping to put it there, Acer this morning announced two new Vidia 3D Vision-Ready video projectors.
"The new Acer video projectors provide incredibly compelling and realistic 3D video and images that make customers feel like they are part of the experience," said Irene Chan, senior product marketing manager for peripherals, Acer America. "With the Acer projectors, consumers can enjoy existing 2D content as if it were developed in 3D for a more immersive entertainment and learning experience – whether it’s a fictional journey, a scientific exploration of the universe or a tour of ancient archaeological sites. Of course, customers will thoroughly enjoy the superior visuals projected from these new models even while watching traditional 2D content."
First up is the Acer H5360 projector, which beams content in 720p. Acer rates this one at up to 2600 ANSI lumens and a 3200:1 contrast ratio. You'll also find an HDMi port, three RCA jacks, component video, S-video mini DIN, 2.5mm audio mini-jack, and a 15-pin D-Sub
Sitting a little lower on the totem pole is the Acer X1261 projector. Unlike the H5360, the X1261 boasts a native XGA resolution and 4:3 aspect ratio, although Acer claims it can be adjusted to a 16:9 aspect ratio. This one comes rated at up to 2500 ANSI lumens and a 3700:1 contrast ratio. Input sources include composite, component, S-video mini DIM, and a stereo mini jack.
Both projectors come capable of handling 3D content when combined with Nvidia's 3D Vision technology, which you can read more about here.
The H5360 ($699) and X1261 ($579) are available now.
If OLED's the future, where does the technology fit into the present? Not anywhere, according to Sony, at least when talking about high definition television sets. Sony announced plans to end sales of OLED sets in Japan until costs come down.
Probably a good idea too, considering the only model Sony released was an 11-inch set that commanded roughly $2,222. That's barely larger than most netbooks, but a whole heck of a lot more expensive, to state the obvious.
This doesn't mean that Sony is turning its back on OLED technology in general, the company just wants no part in selling obscenely overpriced displays. Instead, Sony said it will focus on research and development, and may even dabble in overseas production.
"We will continue to consider new products and applications including OLED TVs," Sony spokesman Shigenori Yoshida said.
If the choices are to go big or go home, Panasonic (and NBC) will take the former. Just how big are we talking? Panasonic says it has been selected to provide its 152-inch Plasma display to NBC during the network's coverage of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games.
In addition to providing the world's largest plasma display, Panasonic also promised to serve up technical and engineering support.
"As a worldwide Olympic partner, Panasonic is honored to be able to provide NBC with our 152-inch Plasma Display for their coverage of the Vancouver Winter Games," said Nelkin. "Our 152-inch Plasma is the world's largest Plasma Display Panel and is the perfect technology on which to show all of the exciting, fast-paced action and stunning imagery of the Olympic Winter Games."
So what are the specs on a 152-inch display? Try 8.84 million pixels, or 4096 x 2160. That's four times the 1080p HD specification of 1920 x 1080. Panasonic says the screen size is equivalent to nine 50-inch plasmas with an effective viewing area of 11.2 feet.
We wonder how long it will take someone at NBC to hook up an Xbox 360.
We saw how splendid an IPS monitor can be when we reviewed Dell’s 24-inch UltraSharp U2410 in January. “Sometimes you have to pay to play,” we concluded. Moments after reaching that summit, we observed NEC’s 30-inch LCD3090 WQXi IPS panel looming before us. Fully aware that we could buy three U2410s and a Radeon HD 5870 to drive them for about the same amount of cash ($2,200, to be exact), we began our ascent.
The LCD3090 has a native resolution of 2560x1600 (a 16:10 aspect ratio), which is typical of 30-inch displays. This one is an eight-bit panel with programmable 12-bit lookup tables. It delivers 102 percent of the NTSC color space and 97.8 percent of the Adobe RGB color space. Inputs are limited to dual-link DVI-D with an odd HDCP on/off feature, and DVI-I. Why would you need to turn off HDCP? We’re not really sure.
There’s no media card reader or integrated USB hub; more importantly, there’s no DisplayPort support, either. But the stand tilts, swivels, and pivots; and if you still can’t find a comfortable position, you can mount it on an optional articulated arm using its standard VESA mount.