BFG Technologies, most known for its Nvidia-based videocards and, more recently, a power supply lineup and a short stint with 650i/680i-based motherboards, is jumping into the system building scene with a line of gaming and multimedia PCs called Phobos.
"Phobos was designed for gamers and media enthusiasts who demand top of the line performance, but may not have the time, desire, or expertise to build or maintain a high end system,” said John Malley, senior director of marketing for BFG Technologies.
BFG's banking on its reputation as a player in the enthusiast market to be successful in a sector which has seen consolidation in recent years, such as Dell acquiring Alienware and HP picking up Voodoo PC, two boutique vendors who helped define the niche market. BFG also looks to set its Phobos line apart with a combination of high end parts, "refined aesthetics," and a touch panel LCD.
Hit the jump to find out what BFG's new rigs will be packing underneath the hood.
It seems inevitable that ISPs currently training their guns at p2p traffic will soon start fretting over video sharing websites, which are gaining in popularity and gradually conquering more internet bandwidth. November 2008 proved to be another prolific month for online video websites. According to data released by comScore Video Metrix service, there was a 34% year-over-year increase in online viewership in the US in November. A staggering 12.7 billion online videos kept online viewers riveted to their computer screens.
Google websites accounted for 40% of the total views in that month. Google obviously has its Youtube juggernaut to thank for being in the ascendancy. Youtube contributed 98% of Google’s market share. Google websites also triumphed as far as total number of viewers goes with 98 million viewers in November.
One website that has come up by leaps and bounds is Hulu, which retained the 6th spot in the high-stakes online video market in November 2008. Hulu scored a major victory over its competitors by emerging as the website with most riveting videos as the average duration of each video viewed at Hulu was 11.9 minutes – way higher than the industry average of 3.1 minutes.
Facebook has dragged Brazilian start-up Power.com to court. The Brazilian company has been on collision course with Facebook ever since its launch, for it is a social-network aggregator that allows internet users to access all major social network websites, including Facebook and MySpace, through its website. Power.com raised Facebook’s ire by proceeding with the launch of its service without seeking its blessings.
The two parties tried to settle their differences across the negotiation table, but all in vain. Facebook stipulated that the Meebo for social networks utilize Facebook connect. It eventually decided to file suit against the Brazilian start-up. Although the Brazilian website’s CEO Steve Vachani maintains the case against his company is weak, the website is no longer offering access to Facebook through its website. Ironically, Facebook has been under fire for showing feeds from Google Reader, Hulu, Last.fm, Pandora, StumbleUpon, and YouTube.
Fujitsu will have to wait longer to get rid of its blighted hard disk drive business as talks between the Japanese company and Western Digital failed to bear any results. Kuniaki Nozoe, Fujitsu’s President, stated in the most unequivocal fashion possible that the deal is off. According to him, the talks fell off after Western Digital refused to accede to Fujitsu’s demands.
Fujitsu was keen on selling its Japanese plants and the ones abroad as a bundle. It even insisted upon most of the people employed in its hard drive business retaining their jobs. According to a Japanese newspaper, the asking price was $550 million.
Steve Jobs' health has been a cause of great speculation all around the internet in recent days. Most conjectures pointed at sickness of some sort or the other, though the gravity of the purported illness swayed wildly in each theory. Perhaps fearing that the rumors would eventually dent the spirits of investors, Steve Jobs broke his silence by issuing a statement detailing the current state of his health.
Jobs acknowledged that he is suffering from a hormone imbalance that sends the protein level in a patient's body plummeting. His doctors believe that it will take him until spring to recover fully. His unnamed ailment closely resembles Crohn’s Disease, which impacts the upper intestine, according to a report. One thing is for certain that Apple aficionados must be amassing more information on the Crohn’s disease - few might even be working on a more effective cure.
Apple investors and fans must be feeling a lot better after receiving official word on Jobs’ health. Perhaps Jobs felt that had he delayed an official statement any further it could have opened the door wide open for wilder speculation. After all, it was only a few months ago that his obituary was published. We wish him a speedy recovery.
Research group The Nielsen Company recently released a list of 2008’s 10 most played PC games, but seeing as how you’re probably still scraping bolded numbers off your monitor after you last careened into our listsanctum, we nearly skipped it. However, as it turns out, Nielsen’s runway strut contained a pretty interesting anomaly, so we want you to look at it.
Top 10 PC Game Titles in the U.S.
World of Warcraft (2004) / Blizzard Entertainment 671 Avg Minutes Played Per Week / 0.723% AU*
Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare (2007) / Infinity Ward 403 Avg Minutes Played Per Week / 0.163% AU*
Halo: Combat Evolved (2003) / Gearbox, Bungie 295 Avg Minutes Played Per Week / 0.092% AU*
The Sims (2000) / EA Maxis 213 Avg Minutes Played Per Week / 0.09% AU*
The Sims 2 (2004) / EA Maxis 291 Avg Minutes Played Per Week / 0.086% AU*
RuneScape (2001) / Jagex Ltd. 451 Avg Minutes Played Per Week / 0.084% AU*
Diablo II (2000) / Blizzard Entertainment 313 Avg Minutes Played Per Week / 0.065% AU*
Team Fortress 2 (2007) / Valve 371 Avg Minutes Played Per Week / 0.063% AU*
Counter-Strike (2000) / Valve 282 Avg Minutes Played Per Week / 0.062% AU*
Counter-Strike: Source (2004) / Valve 426 Avg Minutes Played Per Week / 0.061% AU*
*AU is the percent of PC Gamers playing title in the average minute. Data from Jan - Oct 2008.
Notice anything? Yep. Not a single game on the list was released in 2008 – except for maybe WoW: WotLK, but even then, this is telling sign of where PC gaming now needs to park its tuckus. Bottom line: Subscriptions and microtransactions. You’re welcome, industry. Our bill’s in the mail.
The Recording Industry Association of America has ended its controversial relationship with MediaSentry. RIAA had entrusted MediaSentry with the task of compiling evidence against internet users that inundated the internet by uploading loads of music.
Buoyed by evidence collected by MediaSentry, RIAA has taken around 35,000 internet users to court with accusations of copyright infringement and piracy. The methods that MediaSentry employed infuriated civil-rights activists galore, but the company remained brazen in its defense.
RIAA’s current decision follows its promise to cut down on lawsuits. However, RIAA is ready with a replacement and has reached an agreement with DtecNet Software APS to fill the void created by MediaSentry, which will now be killing time by assessing the popularity of entertainment websites.
Previously, Google’s Timeline View was only available to those that opted-in to an experiment with Google Labs, but it appears that several popular searches have been providing timelines in the run-of-the-mill search results.
According to Google, their News Archive “provides an easy way to search and explore historical archives. Users can search for events, people or ideas and see how they have been described over time. In addition to searching for the most relevant articles for their query, users can also see a historical overview of the results by browsing an automatically generated timeline.”
The advent of triple channel memory has opened the door to a whole new world of marketing jargon, including the latest windy kit from G.Skill dubbed 'Perfect Storm.'
Like A-Data's recently announced DDR3-2133X kit, G.Skill's Perfect Storm modules come with a funktastic looking two-fan active air cooling solution with blue LEDs, only G.Skill's kit calls for a much less frightening 1.65V compared to A-Data's 2.05V - 2.15V.
The 6-layer Perfect Storm series tout 7-8-7-20, 2T memory timings at DDR3-2000 (PC3-16000), and like all tri-channel modules are designed for Intel's X58 platform. G.Skill also claims "a rigorous, 100 percent hand-tested regime" for its new memory, which, in theory, means the kit should work out of the box with minimal futzing in the BIOS for those sometimes elusive compatibility settings.
G.Skill says its Perfect Storm series will be offered in both 3GB (3x1GB) and 6GB (3x2GB) capacities. No word yet on pricing or availability.
When Build 7000 of Windows 7 leaked onto the Internet recently, some bloggers speculated that Microsoft had deliberately leaked Build 7000. If that's the case, Redmond has some 'splainin' to do: numerous users have reported that Windows Media Player 12 (the media player included in Windows 7) corrupts some MP3 files.
Microsoft is aware of the bug and is working on a patch, but if you've decided not to wait for an official Beta 1 of Windows 7, what should you do in the meantime to protect your MP3 collection? Join us after the jump to learn how to protect your precious rips and purchased files - and for your chance to tell us if this has happened to you.