The problem with predicting the future is that there’s so much of it. You can predict some pieces of it because some trends are obvious, but you can’t predict how all the pieces are going to fit together, and even more difficult, you cannot predict what human beings will do with all those different pieces once they have put them together.
The smartphone is a great example. Robert A. Heinlein predicted cell phones in The Star Beast, first published in 1954. Other writers predicted tablets as well. But nobody predicted Twitter or sexting. Those were surprises.
We’re on the threshold of another leap forward in the punctuated evolution of computing technology and the first pieces are starting to appear. I think it’s inevitable that some of these pieces are going to mate, mutate, and evolve into something new.
Zotac's quickly building a reputation as the witch doctor of computers. The company isn't shrinking heads, it's shrinking PCs. Zotac's latest creation is the A75-ITX WiFi platform, a mini-PC built around AMD's A75 chipset with support for socket FM1 accelerated processing units (APUs) and utilizing the mini-ITX form factor. Despite it's small size, the A75-ITX WiFi comes wielding a very big spec sheet.
We took a look at the Ooma Telo recently, and found that this almost free VoIP service was a great solution for penny pinchers. Ooma’s Telo bay station connects to your home network and offers nearly unlimited calls, and all you have to pay is a few bucks in taxes. Today, Ooma has announced the system is getting a refresh with a new wireless adapter and free Bluetooth capability.
It's been more than a year since we anointed Netgear's Rangemax WNDR3700 (N600) as our "Best of the Best" pick for wireless routers, and to this day, its overall performance has been unmatched. Even Netgear's own WNDR4000 (aka the N750, because it supports theoretical speeds of 300Mb/sec on its 2.4GHz radio and 450Mb/sec on its 5GHz radio) couldn't topple its predecessor. The WNDR4000 scored a rather pedestrian 6 verdict compared to the WNDR3700's 9/Kick-Ass. Netgear might finally have a worthy successor in the WNDR4500 (aka, the N900 because—you guessed it—the router supports theoretical speeds of 450Mb/sec on both the 2.4- and 5GHz bands).
Inexpensive wireless routers have rendered powerline adapters a niche category in home networks, and one TrendNet continues to happily serve. The company's latest offering is the 200Mbps Compact Powerline AV Adapter, model TPL-306E, which is capable of extending your Internet connection to areas your router might not reach, such as an Internet television in your mancave or a game console just out of reach on the second floor.
Toshiba just trotted out what it claims is the world's first SDHC memory card with embedded wireless LAN functionality baked in. It's called the FlashAir, it has 8GB of storage capacity, and it sounds an awful lot like the Eye-Fi line of SDHC cards, doesn't it? In some respects, the FlashAir is similar, but it's also different in one very big way.
I’m extremely impressed, and maybe a little nervous, about the automotive industry’s fascination with “intelligently networked cars.”
The principle is simple: Our actual vehicles become the nodes for a massive, moving Wi-Fi network, one that would bounce data around between points, i.e. that trusty four-door or other car, all while alerting onboard computers of any problems up ahead. But this isn’t your run-of-the-mill Wi-Fi, like you’ve got at Starbucks or at home. It’s more like a souped-up, high-powered, encrypted ad-hoc network.
China's determination to police the Internet in any and every way it sees fit seems to have no bounds. The country's officials have outdone themselves this time by ordering all public spaces offering Wi-Fi access to install specific software police can use to identify people using the service, state media said today according to the Associated Free Press.
In a very short time frame we’ve become constantly connected; always on and high speed, we need to be able to get our internet fix anytime, anywhere. Most of us are more than a little reliant on our Internet connections; it’s certainly not far from the truth to say that we take this access for granted. For example, how many of us would be horrified if we had to go back to a 56K modem? (To those of you who are currently rocking such a vintage connection speed, our condolences).
While there are many methods of getting a high-speed connection when you’re away from your home service, they all have their pros and cons. We’re going to break down some of the different devices and services that provide internet access across all fifty states, delivering that delicious online content you crave.
3D Map of the World Wide Web - image courtesy vlib.us
A Minnesota man is finding out that you can actually serve hard time for actling like an all-around jackass online. That can take many forms, but in this case, Barry Ardolf received an 18-year prison sentence for essentially terrorizing his neighborhood through a series of cyberattacks in retaliation for having the cops called on him by his neighbors. It gets more bizarre after the break.