Anyone can talk about "visual computing," the big catchphrase of this year's Nvision conference. But few walk the walk as well as Battlestar Galactica's Tricia Helfer. She took part in Monday's keynote address alongside Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang, sharing how virtualization and computer effects have expanded her acting boundaries and methodology.
But there's always more to Six than what you see at face value. So Maximum PC sat down with Tricia to grill her (as nicely as one chats with someone who gave Starbuck the business) about the kind of technology that really makes her tick, and how she's managed her spaceborne success-turned-geek icon. Even after all that, she still wouldn't drop us any details on the Battlestar series finale--our favorite Cylon truly has a heart of steel.
How the world turns. Mention overclocking ten years ago at IDF and a Pinkerton would escort you off the show floor to a room where three Intel engineers would beat you with old Pentium Pro motherboards. Today, Intel is actually actively promoting overclocking, but big blue is calling it Turbo Mode.
Turbo Mode is just one of the several groundbreaking features in Nehalem, but it’s also certainly one of the most head-turning. But how exactly does it work and how do you control it? Walk with us as we decode Intel’s Turbo Mode, show you how you’ll set it up in the BIOS (with first photos), and tell you what you should expect from your next heatsink.
Want to take a look at the Nehalem BIOS? Of course you do.
We don't like taking on the role of enforcer, nor do we like bullying those ill equipped to defend themselves. But sometimes, for the greater good of all involved, as PC users we feel obligated to step in and lay the smack down when our Mac brethren come asking for it. In a way, we feel like Billy Madison did when he told a bunch of first graders "Now you're all in big, big trouble" before proceeding to pummel them in dodgeball.
During a private briefing with Intel at IDF yesterday to talk about Nehalem, we were given a demo of some cool software in development that makes good use of the multi-threaded cores of the new CPU. Francois Piednoel, the Senior Performance Analyst (ie. benchmarking guru) at Intel describes Deep Viewer as a "science project" of sorts. It's an image sorting application that they acquired from an independent software developer that reminds us of Microsoft Live Labs' Seadragon technology (which is used in the recently released Photosynth online app). We're talking about near-infinite scaling of visual data (in this case photos and videos) being processed in real-time on your display.
The big pc gaming hardware news to come out of this year's Leipzig Games Convention is the announcement of Microsoft's extension of the popular Sidewinder peripheral line. The Sidewinder gaming mouse, which was introduced last year to mixed reviews (we thought it was too big and had a mediocre scroll wheel) now has a little brother, the Sidewinder X5. The wired, 9-button device sports a 2000 hardware-adjustable dpi and the same awesome vertical thumb buttons that we liked about the original. In addition to the new mouse, Microsoft also announced the first Sidewinder keyboard, dubbed the X6. We are much more excited about this product, since it touts innovative features such as a detachable numpad and unique "cruise control" option. Microsoft stopped by our offices to let us get our eager hands on these new products.
Click through for the full specs, impresions, and more hands-on photos!
From Deschutes to Penryn, from Voodoo2 to GX2, from floppy drives to SSDs, the definition of pure PC power has changed radically over the last decade, and Maximum PC has been there—hands-on and no holding back—helping computer enthusiasts make sense of it. In honor of those 10 eventful years, we take a look back at some of the key moments in the magazine’s history, hear from some of the editors who have been there along the way, and take a wild guess at how another 10 years might shape the computing landscape. Strap on your sneaks, folks, we’re taking a walk down memory lane.
Celebrate 10 years of pure PC power after the jump!
No doubt you’re familiar with the Universal Serial Bus – we ranked it as our top PC innovation of all time. But what do you know about the next version of this ubiquitous interface? USB 2.0 (otherwise known as USB Hi-Speed) boosted the original 12Mbps data rate to 480Mmb/s over eight years ago, and now USB 3.0 (dubbed USB Superspeed) is set to multiply that bandwidth tenfold. The USB Implementers Forum (led by Intel) released the USB 3.0 spec to hardware partners last week after some reported disputes with AMD and Nvidia (who, afraid Intel would have a jump start in incorporating the tech in chipsets, threatened to develop their own USB standard). But how does this affect you? We dug up some new information about USB 3.0, got our hands on the new connectors, and even took a look inside the new cables.
Click through for the five reasons why we’re excited about USB 3.0
Another Maximum PC exclusive! We got first hands-on with HP's new Elitebook 2730p notebook, which features a swiveling 12.1-inch screen (1280x800 native resolution) that turns it into a tablet PC. Additional features on this rugged business notebook: 2MP webcam, 95% full-size QWERTY keyboard with HP dura key coating (spill and smudge-resistant, expresscard slot, and HP's business card OCR reader software. In addition to a newly improved slot for the tablet pen (it won't accidentally fall out anymore), the notebook also brings back the highly requested jog dial.
The torrent of business laptop announcements continue. Earlier this week, we took a look at the new Lenono Thinkpad W700 and HP Elitebook 8730w 17” mobile workstations announcements, and now Dell is making itself heard with a completely revamped Latitude Business notebook lineup. We attended the Dell Mobility press conference event in San Francisco’s Museum of Modern Art to check out the new laptops, which are infused with some very interesting technologies: 19-hour battery life and an always-on Linux-based OS frontend.
Click through for more saucy details, our hands-on impressions, and of course, high res photos!
Technological trends may come and go, but every once in awhile they turn out to be more than just temporary fads. Consider that many of today's gamers weren't even born yet in the Atari 2600's heyday, yet 30 years later gaming consoles have become so popular that there exists an entire generation of FPS junkies who actually prefer lining up a headshot with a gamepad instead of using a keyboard and mouse. And speaking of videogames, let's not forget the 3D revolution sparked by the now defunct 3DFX (moment of silence).
More than just fun and games, recognizing lasting fads can prove lucrative for companies and upstarts who ride the hype, but it's not always easy predicting where PCs are headed. If we were to look back 10 years from now, what would we say were most influential technologies of the time? No need to hop into your time machine, because with the help of Gartner Inc., an information technology research and advisory company, we answer that question right now.
Hit the jump to see which of today's technologies are at the pinnacle of their hype cycle.