“We're happy to announce to the gaming community that as of today, April 1st, 2009, FileFront is a completely independent company again and is no longer part of Ziff Davis Media. All previously suspended services should be active and working again. We thank Ziff Davis Media for their cooperation and willingness to keep the site and community alive,” reads a message from FileFront’s founders.
FileFront also made it excessively clear that its brush with death was in no way an April Fool’s joke – despite the fact that the download service popped out of its casket during the least productive “work day” of the entire year.
So! Since April Fool’s seems to have somehow acquired the ability to – on a whim – resurrect Ziff Davis gaming properties, does this mean EGM also once more walks among the living? Please?
Motion Computing may not have went entirely back to the drawing board, but it did offer some groovy updates to its rugged C5 and F5 tablet PCs. Motion also said its making its redesigned PCs available for use on the Verizon Wireless mobile broadband network.
"Motion Computing is recognized for solutions that improve productivity for highly mobile users by creating devices that are designed to work the way the users do," said Anthony A. Lewis, vice president of open development at Verizon Wireless. "Now with anytime access to the Verizon Wireless network, Motion tablet users, from hospitals to construction sites, can be more productive when away from the office."
The redesigned specs of the two tablets now include 801.11a/g/n, an Intel Core 2 Duo processor, a 64GB solid state drive (SSD), and longer battery life. Motion has also made available an external battery charger. Full specs for the C5 and F5 can be found here and here, respectively.
Both tablets are available now with the C5 starting at around $2,200 and the F5 at $2,800.
In what initially looked to be an April Fool's Day prank, film distributor 20th Century Fox wasn't laughing when it learned its upcoming movie "X-Men: Origins: Wolverine" was viewed by thousands of people a month before the flick is scheduled to show on the big screen. While pirated movies showing up online isn't anything new, this particular leak is rare given that it hadn't even premiered yet.
"The source of the initial leak and any subsequent postings will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of thelaw," 20th Century Fox said. "The courts have handed down significant criminal sentences for such acts in the past."
According to 20th Century Fox, both the FBI and MPAA are investigating the leak. Some estimates peg the illicit release as having been downloaded hundreds of thousands of times in its first 24 hours on the web. However, Eric Garland, chief executive of the file-sharing monitoring firm BigChampagne, said that online viewers would only account for a small percentage of the film's total audience.
Garland did also point out that bad word of mouth could be a concern. The copy that was leaked to the internet was missing many special effects and included temporary sound and music.
Holy moly, what a day it's been in graphics cards. Nvidia and ATI are set to do battle in the mid-range market, the former with today's announcement of the GeForce GTX 275 videocard, and ATI with the launch of its HD 4890 videocard.
While Nvidia's announcement may have been intended to steal some thunder from ATI's HD 4890 launch, it hasn't seemed to make much of a difference. According to news site DailyTech, 50,000 Radeon HD 4980 videocards have already been shipped to retailers, many of which have been sold to end-users before today's launch. A quick glance at the Egg shows several models selling for $250, with mail-in-rebates bringing the price down another $20, including XFX, who recently defected as an Nvidia-only board partner to sell both ATI and Nvidia brand videocards.
Rumored specs turned out to be largely true for ATI's new part. The RV790-based 4890 comes with a core clockspeed of 850MHz, or 100MHz faster than the HD 4870. Other goodies include 1GB of GDDR5 clocked at 975MHz on a 256-bit bus, 800 stream processors, 40 texture units, 16 ROPs, and a 190W rated maximum TDP (60W idle).
MSI adds to its mobile gaming line with the release of its GX733 laptop, a 17-inch notebook that will hold particular appeal to the AMD faithful. That's because the GX733 has been built around AMD's Turion X2 Ultra dual-core mobile CPU.
For those of you still reading, other specs include up to 4GB of DDR2-667 or 800 RAM, ATI's Mobility Radeon HD 4670 graphics with a 512MB GDDR3 frame buffer, 4.1 audio, up to 500GB of hard drive storage, optional Blu-ray drive, 4-in-1 card reader, 2MP webcam, three USB 2.0 ports plus an eSATA+USB combo port, HDMI, and Windows Vista Home Premium.
To make things a little more interesting, the GX733 also comes equipped with MSI's Turbo Drive Engine Technology. When in AC mode, users can tap the turbo button above the keyboard to increase the speed of the CPU and "also the computer may run smoother and to the best of its abilities."
No word yet on price or availability, though judging by the specs, we're expecting 'affordable' and 'soon.'
The Conficker worm has been generating the big security headlines, but what The New York Times calls a "vast electronic spying operation" reveals an ongoing, very sophisticated cyberespionage campaign that may well represent an even more important threat than Conficker - especially to the Dalai Lama's Tibetan freedom movement.
Researchers at the University of Toronto Munk Center's Citizen Lab summarize GhostNet thus:
Documented evidence of a cyber espionage network— GhostNet—infecting at least 1,295 computers in 103 countries, of which close to 30% can be considered as high-value diplomatic, political, economic, and military targets.
Documented evidence of GhostNet penetration of computer systems containing sensitive and secret information at the private offces of the Dalai Lama and other Tibetan targets.
Documentation and reverse engineering of the modus operandi of the GhostNet system—including vectors, targeting, delivery mechanisms, data retrieval and control systems—reveals a covert, diffcult-to-detect and elaborate cyber-espionage system capable of taking full control of affected systems.
To find out more about how GhostNet works, join us after the jump.
It seems as though everyone is looking to put a twist on their netbook lineup as of late in order to stand out from the crowd. Dell tossed a TV tuner into its Inspiron Mini 10, OCZ unveiled a DIY netbook at CeBIT, and more recently, Asus announced its first optical drive-equipped Eee PC. Not to be left behind, Samsung's upcoming N120 netbook will come with integrated 2.1 speakers, and it's available for pre-order now.
Samsung still hasn't published an official product page for the N120, but that's okay, because a handful of merchants have coughed up the core configuration. And at this point, we have the basic netbook blueprint fairly well memorized. In addition to somehow managing to cram a subwoofer into a 10.1-inch netbook, Samsung's N120, available in either black or white, will come configured with Intel's Atom N270 (1.6GHz) processor, 1GB of DDR2 RAM, a 160GB hard drive, and Windows XP.
Pre-order pricing has so far hovered in the $450 range with at least one site showing an ETA of April 14.
The launch of a new free email service with the promise of a full gigabyte of storage space was no prank when Gmail was first made available on April 1, 2004, otherwise known as April Fools Day. Five years later, the wildly popular (among techies) webmail continues to benefit with frequent feature enhancements (Mail Goggles, anyone?). And five years later, Gmail is still in beta.
"Google Mail was born out of an experimental project created by a few engineers at Google five years ago," a Google spokesperson said. "From the beginning, we wanted Gmail to be a faster, cleaner, and more intuitive solutin for people's email."
Surprisingly, Gmail has yet to gain mass appeal among the general public, despite having long since abandoned its invite-only system for signing up. Accorded to Hitwise stats, Gmail only claimed 6 percent of the webmail market last year, compared to Yahoo Mail's 55 percent and Microsoft Windows Live at 26 percent. However, Google's Gmail service continues to grow, and to the tune of 43 percent last year according to comScore.
TunerFreeMCE's Martin Millmore posted an example of what Hulu is doing to restrict its content, which at first meant that "no new programs will be added to Hulu in TunerFreeMCE at the moment." However, Millmore was quick to update the Vista MCE add-in to version 2.6.7, which he says works with Hulu's new encoding, albeit while running a fair bit slower.
According to Engadget, Boxee will also have an update available for Windows and Linux users before long with a workaround in place. Once that happens, it will be interesting to see how Hulu responds, who some feel is at the whim of its content providers, and not evil aliens (if such a separation exists).
Nvidia today announced the GeForce GTX 275 GPU, which the company claims is the highest performing GPU in the $230 to $250 price tier. As the name suggests, the GTX 275 nestles in between the GTX 260 and GTX 285, fleshing out the company's mid-range graphics line.
Build around the GT200 architecture, the GTX 275 sports 240 processor cores racing along at 1,404MHz, 80 texture processing units, and 895MB of GDDR3 video memory clocked at 1,134MHz on a 448-bit bus. The reference design calls for the GPU to run 634MHz. The end result is a videocard that, according to Nvidia, will best ATI's HD 4890 by 10 to 20 percent.
Nvidia also announced its new GeForce Power Pack #3. Included with the new Power Pack are three new PhysX-accelerated apps and two new CUDA-accelerated programs.
The GeForce GTX 275 will be available globally on or before April 14 in both standard and overclocked versions from the usual suspects (Asus, BFG, EVGA, Gigabyte, MSI, XFX, and more).