A case for librarians and other noise conscious builders
There's something to be said for building a quiet computer. It takes a bit of research to build a truly silent (or near silent) system, and of course it starts with your choice of case -- an open air chassis is probably not the best option. There are several quiet cases available, and beginning today, you can add Corsair's new Carbide Series 330R Titanium Edition to the list of quiet computing enclosures.
Intel today announced that its board of directors approved an increase in its cash dividend to 96 cents per share on an annual basis, representative of a 6 percent increase, starting with the dividend that will be declared in the first quarter of 2015. In addition, Intel predicted full year revenue growth for 2015 to be in the mid-single digits, trumping what most analysts were expecting.
Save 40 percent on handheld lasers that will soon be unavailable to purchase
Wicked Lasers builds some of the most awesome (and dangerous) handheld lasers around, like the Krypton that earned a rare 10 verdict and coveted Maximum PC Kick Ass award when we reviewed it back in 2011. The company has been the topic of many articles on our website throughout the years, though sadly, the good times are coming to an end. Wicked Lasers is under new ownership and will no longer ship handheld lasers greater than 5mW to U.S. customers effective January 1, 2015.
Google will become an alternative choice in Firefox, as will DuckDuckGo
There are few things you can count on in life -- death, taxes, and blowhard analysts incorrectly proclaiming the death of the PC. A year ago, we would have added another entry, one that says Google will be the default search in Firefox until the end of time. No one would question it because the two have been so close for so long, but anything can happen when a contract comes up for renewal. And what happened this time is Mozilla chose Yahoo to replace Google as its default search provider for the next five years.
A 4K Ultra HD monitor with an In-Plane Switching (IPS) panel
Acer today introduced its newest 4K Ultra HD monitor to the U.S. market, the B326HK. It's a 32-inch monitor with an LED backlight and In-Plane Switching (IPS) panel instead of a lower quality TN screen. According to Acer, the B326HK is suitable for a wide range of buyers, from home consumers to commercial customers interested in gaming, watching movies, web design, and more.
Caught in the middle of its parent company's shenanigans
We reached out to Zalman a couple of weeks ago after reading multiple reports that it was headed for bankruptcy as a result of alleged bank fraud by its parent company Moneual. Zalman responded, though later asked us to pull our follow-up article until it had a chance to draft an official statement. That statement came today, and as previously reported, Zalman contends the bankruptcy rumors are "completely false," though it's true that its parent company was involved in a $3 billion fraud conspiracy.
Most users shopping for a new monitor will choose between a widescreen or an ultra-widescreen panel, but have you ever thought about going square? Probably not, though Eizo hopes you will after seeing its latest display. Eizo's FlexScan EV2730Q is a 26.5-inch square monitor with a 1920x1920 resolution (1:1 aspect ratio) that's "wide all around." With regards to screen real estate, it has 78 percent more pixels than a standard widescreen 1920x1080 monitor.
Many things retro end up coming back in style years after the fact, though what about old school adventure gaming? You know, the point & click variety that was so popular in the 1980s and early 1990s with games like Maniac Mansion, Zak McKracken and the Alien Mindbenders, and several others I recall playing on a Commodore 64, and then later on an IBM compatible 286 PC. Well, after years of waiting, I'm happy to report that Ron Gilbert and Gary Winnick have teamed up once more to create a point & click adventure game called Thimbleweed Park.
11 Bit Studios, the developer behind This War of Mine, has been hanging around The Pirate Bay lately, though not because it's looking to get anyone in trouble for pirating its game. Instead, 11 Bit Studios is handing out Steam codes to gamers who would otherwise pirate This War of Mine, an unorthodox strategy that it hopes will win the company a loyal following and buy it some goodwill.
Taking into account viewing habits of cord cutters
A growing number of consumers are moving away from cable and satellite TV subscriptions in favor of streaming services like Netflix and Hulu Plus. It makes sense in a lot of ways -- why pay a premium for a bloated TV package just so you can access the handful of channels you really want to watch? That's a topic/rant for another day, but in the meantime, Nielsen will start taking into account the viewing habits of streaming subscribers by measuring viewership data for online video services.