One of the greatest inventions to come to the PC is that of the Universal Serial Bus (USB). It doesn't matter whether you're in the market for a spiffy new keyboard or a digital camera, because nearly every gadget today plugs into any of the many USB ports found on any modern computer. Why can't all digital devices be as easy to work with?
If Doug Palmer's vision ever comes to fruition, they will be. Palmer, an engineer at the UC San Diego division of the California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology (Calit2), wants to eradicate wall warts. No, he's not referring to unsightly growths on your home's walls, but the many different external power adapters for all of your gizmos and gadgets.
Sun can lay claim as the first company to release a one terabyte tape drive with its StorageTek T10000B, but the company didn't have long to celebrate. Raining on their parade, IBM has released a one terabyte tape drive of its own, only this one runs 33 percent faster than Sun's.
The new IBM TS1130 tape drive can store up to one terabyte of uncompressed data per cartridge at 160MB/sec, or 40MB/sec faster than the T10000B, allowing the new model to complete backups up to 54 percent faster than the previous generation drive.
IBM describes the tape drives as being able to hold the text of one million books, and to keep that data from becoming corrupt, the TS1130 uses a special head overcoat technology IBM claims will lengthen the overall life expectancy of the drive. The TS1130 also utilizes a "Giant Magnetoresistive (GMR) head design that leverages IBM's world-record achievement of developing a more sensitive read-write head for the magnetic tape system." In other words, expect fewer data read errors.
The new drive uses existing 3592 rewritable and WORM (Write Once Read Many) cartridges, offering backwards compatibility with Gen 1, 2, and 3 formats supporting both read and write for Gen 2 and read only for Gen 1. And backwards compatibility is a good thing too, as IBM says the TS1130 will carry a starting price of $39,050, with an upgrade option from existing drives for a more manageable $19,500. Ouch.
Intel’s dual-core Atom will see the light of the day in Q4 and is slated to be released on September 21, 2008, according to Fudzilla. It will be the first dual-core processor in the power efficient Atom family that has emerged as a popular powerplant for netbooks. The dual-core Atom 330 will set you back by $43, which is quite reasonable as the Atom 230 single-core processor is priced $29. The Atom 330 with its 1.6 GHz clock speed, 533 FSB and 1 MB L2 cache will be ideal for budget rigs. Once the Atom 330 release is out of the way, all eyes will be on the launch of 1.87 GHz Atom processors.
OS X has remained an Apple fiefdom and any attempts at liberating the OS have been frowned upon by the company. Earlier this month, Apple initiated legal proceedings against Psystar that sells a Mac-clone. However, the law suit seems to have had very little deterrent value as yet another manufacturer has announced plans to launch its own Mac-clone, though, with a difference – not an endorsement.
Open Tech Inc. has announced the Open Tech Home and the Open Tech XT open PCs that will easily allow users to run OS X. The similarity between Psystar’s outright Mac-clone and Open Tech’s upcoming PCs ends here as the latter’s offerings won’t come with OS X pre-installed, instead, users will have to install it on their own using a meticulously crafted set of instructions. Open Tech believes that this move will shield it from any legal action. But Apple's legal department might hold a different opinion.
I hate it when I am wrong…except this time. Being wrong means I get to have SLI when Bloomfield ships. It seems that Nvidia will be ready for the Bloomfield launch after all with the nForce 200 SLI processor, the older brother of the nForce 100 that was so successfully with the launch of the Skulltrail.
Bryan Del Rizzo with Nvidia says, “some vendors will be incorporating more than one nForce 200 processor for even more advanced configurations and flexibility for multi-GPU configurations. Both 2-way and 3-Way SLI configurations will be fully supported with our latest GPUs, including the GeForce GTX 280 and GeForce GTX 260 GPUs."
I certainly can’t wait to see what the nForce 200 CPUs can do. The part about “more advanced configurations and flexibility for multi-GPU” really sparks my interest. Maybe some sort of GPU cluster across different Nvidia GPUs? I’ll be keeping an eye on that.
Perhaps even more interesting than that, was when Bryan said, “We are not doing our own native chipset for Bloomfield.” What? That’s right, no native Nvidia chipset for Bloomfield CPUs. The reason for not doing a QPI (Quick Path Interconnect) chipset is because of the quick transition to DMI (Desktop Management Interface) and the short-lived nature of QPI. Picking up an X58 Chipset Board with an nForce 200 SLI processor will be the only way to get SLI.
This is a pretty big shift considering Nvidia puts out a very popular chipset for enthusiasts, not that Intel chipsets are any slouch.
It looks like the sluggish economy is affecting LCD panel revenues, they dropped 11% in June, but they still represent a 12% on-year growth. Samsung Electronics remains the worldwide leader in terms revenues, followed by LG Display and AU Optronics, according to DisplaySearch.
There was $6.9 billion in total LCD revenues for June. No matter how you look at it, that is a lot of LCD panels.
Panel makers however see the price drop as a possible stimulant to boost demand. They believe prices will stabilize in August, and stand a chance of rising in September, driven by back to school demand.
That means look for your bargins now to complete your 3 or 4 monitor setup!
TomsHardware.com is reporting that the originally scheduled launch of Nehalem based Bloomfield processors will be moved up to September. Imagine that, a hardware launch ahead of schedule! The X58 chipsets will launch along with it.
Some early tests of samples of Nehalem show it beating out current processors by 20 to 30 percent. It appears to like overclocking as well with some overclocking tests going to almost 1Ghz over stock. Nehalem ditches the traditional front-side bus (FSB), and instead uses an external multiplier to control the link between CPU core, memory controller, and north-bridge.
This is only going to further mash AMDs toes as their next CPU, Shanghai, doesn’t look promising for catching up to Intel. Unless AMD has a hat trick waiting, we’ll have to wait until San Paolo and Magny-Cours come out in 2010 to see if AMD can catch up. A year and a half is a long time and a lot can happen in the CPU world. With Nehalem looking to come out early, Intel stretches its lead.
Is Nehalem seductive enough to get you to upgrade?
How many times have you laid awake late at night trying to figure out why no one has come up with an MP3 player sporting a mosaic keypad? Probably none, but to ensure you never do, Creative just announced its new Zen Mozaic music player, which the company describes as "a striking sight to behold." And striking it is, but you can form your own interpretation on that one.
The Zen Mozaic replaces Creative's Zen V line, and along with a new look, the "trendy and distinctive" music player increases the screen size from 1.5 to 1.8-inches. Other features include:
2GB or 4GB capacities (8GB and 16GB to be available at a later date)
Built-in FM radio with up to 32 preset stations
Up to 32 hours of continuous audio playback
Oh, and it comes with a built-in speaker, so not only can you surprise passerbys with its 'unique' looks, but you can make sure no one dares comes within listening distance by blaring out crummy music if you so desire.
Pricing and Availability
The Zen Mozaic coms in black or pink for the 2GB model at $99, or black, pink, or silver for the 4GB model at $129. Towards the end of August you'll also be able to pick up an 8GB or 16GB model in black for $249. Plan on getting one?
With the ripe combination of portability and power, today’s notebooks are becoming increasingly popular and replacing desktops as primary computers. And one notebook accessory that many consumers seem to be keeping their eye on is notebook stands. These angled risers that sit on your desk provide ergonomic and organizational solutions to transform a notebook into a makeshift desktop station. But which stand is right for you? Looking for a stand with passive or fan cooling? Or is a stand with comfortable ergonomics and stylish aesthetics more important? What if you want one with a little bit of everything? With these various factors in mind, we tested 11 different notebook stands to see if they’re any better than just putting a notebook on top of a few stacked phonebooks (which in many cases, they weren’t).
With ATI having finally jumped back into the ring with Nvidia, the two companies have been taking performance jabs at each other in tit-for-tat fashion. One of those jabs came last month as Nvidia tweaked its 9800GTX with a die shrink (65nm to 55nm) and clockspeed boosts culminating in a new card dubbed the 9800GTX+. So does that mean BFG's newly announced 9800GTX+ OC can be considered an overclocked, overclocked 9800GTX? Holy redundancy, Batman!
However you label it, BFG's 9800GTX+ OC ranks as one of the fastest G92-based videocards on the market:
Core Clockspeed: 760MHz (vs 738MHz)
Shader Clockspeed:1,890MHz (vs 1,836MHz)
Memory Clockspeed: 2,250MHz (vs 2,200MHz)
Also supported are the usual assortment of goodies, including PhysX support, 3-way SLI, HybridPower technology, DirectX 10, dual-link HDCP, and a bevy of other marketing bullets. The card also comes backed by BFG's 24-hour tech support and lifetime warranty (be sure to register online within 30 days of purchase).
But for all that it includes, BFG still doesn't allow end-users to overclock its videocard, nor are they trusted to swap out the stock cooler for a third-party solution without voiding the warranty (Boo!), a pair of liberties given to XFX and Evga owners.