Hrm, short notice, but today is Sys Admin Day! So, force a password change for everyone who didn't buy you a donut today.
A few people sent word of a shock announcement from Skype, saying a licensing issue may force it to close. "If Skype was to lose the right to use the Joltid software as the result of the litigation, and if alternative software was not available, Skype would be severely and adversely affected and the continued operation of Skype's business as currently conducted would likely not be possible," eBay wrote. Sounds like it will be resolved one way or another, though.
There's a quite funny web TV show called The Guild which is about a group of people who met via World of Warcraft. Not the least thing it has in its favour is Felicia Day who you might remember from Dr Horrible's Sing-Along Blog.
Security vendor McAfee dropped the ball recently, emailing out private info of 1400 people to all attendees of a conference. The event was well attended by about 800 guests. But in e-mail a week later thanking people for attending, McAfee added a spreadsheet containing names, numbers, e-mail addresses, employment details and even dietary requirements of 1408 people.
There's an iPhone SMS Virus doing the rounds. If your phone suddenly begins calling people on its own, sends text messages without you doing so and you see an odd SMS message then chances are you have been infected by the iPhone SMS hack. The only way to remove it would be to fully wipe your device and reload the firmware.
LegitReviews compared GTX 275 vs Radeon HD 4890. What happens when you take the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 275 with Forceware 190.38 drivers and the ATI Radeon HD 4890 with CATALYST 9.7 drivers and see how they do on odd ball game titles like Velvet Assassin and Wall-E? That is what we tackle this time around between these two popular gaming graphics cards.
Yahoo have handed the reigns of their search product to Microsoft. The latest shift in direction will put rival Microsoft Corp. in control of the search results and the ads that appear alongside search results on Yahoo's highly trafficked Web site, assuming the proposed partnership is approved by antitrust regulators in the United States and Europe.
HWZone have a monster 7-way netbook roundup. It's been a while since we've last covered a netbook in detail. So here we are back with a shootout that should knock your socks off. That's right, it's not just one netbook, but SEVEN of the newest 10-inch netbooks from Acer, ASUS, HP, Lenovo, MSI, Samsung and Toshiba in this roundup. Let's go already!
Australia Post have advised they can no longer carry lithium-ion batteries by air. To help you understand the changes Australia Post has developed guidelines which set out the requirements that must be met when posting lithium batteries or items containing them, including watches, clocks, mobile phones and MP3 players. Discussion here.
Bill Gates is apparently not a fan of social networking sites. According to an AFP story, Gates told an Indian audience that Facebook was getting too hard to keep tabs on. The 'too many friends' dilemma has pushed Gates towards giving up on Facebook and maybe social networking altogether.
LegitReviews compared Windows XP and Windows 7 on a netbook. Many netbook manufacturers are starting to offer vouchers for free upgrades to Microsoft Windows 7 once it is released on October 22nd. Want to know how the Release Candidate performs in both benchmarks and battery life? Read on as we put Windows XP and Windows 7 head to head on the ASUS Eee PC 1005HA netbook!
Tweaktown have a video showing a tour of Runcore's factory where SSDs are made. During the five day trip, we arranged a factory tour of the Runcore facilities, which is conveniently located only about ten minutes down the road in the economic and development area of Hangzhou, officially known as 'HEDA' by the Chinese government.
IntelInside found more info on Microsoft's Apple-like retail stores. She said the stores will sell laptops in addition to Microsoft and third-party software, Zunes, and Xbox 360 games and consoles.
However Google's new Australian HQ is a bit of a stinker. The epicentre of the offensive odour appears to be the sewer mining facility connected to Google's new Sydney headquarters, which produces recycled water for toilet flushing and irrigation of the site.
Data Retriever Contest Reminder
(link) Wednesday, 29-July-2009 04:46:07 (GMT +10) - by Agg
Just a reminder about the ongoing contest that OCAU sponsor Data Retriever is running. They have a 1TB SATA HDD and 5x 8GB USB drives to give away randomly to OCAU members who contact them or recommend their services to someone in need of data recovery. The odds aren't bad - there are less than 40 people entered so far (that's better than 1 chance in 7 to win). There's also a snazzy mystery prize that will go to the OCAU member who sends the most referrals their way. Currently, manol is leading with 4 jobs having been sent. You still have until the end of September to get yourself entered to win. See the thread here for full details.
Ma Baker sent word that voting has started for the OCAU Annual Bake Off July 2009. Aargh, I really shouldn't have looked at that thread before having lunch.
If you're bored in Sydney in early August, you can help set a tooth power-brushing record. To celebrate the launch of Dental Health Week, Oral-B, the most recommended toothbrush brand in the world, will be setting an Australian first with the Oral-B Powerbrushing Record for the most number of people brushing their teeth at once! .. Everyone who registers and participates will: * Receive an Oral-B Australian Powerbrushing goodie bag, including a rechargeable Oral-B Powerbrush worth more than $100. * Go into the draw to win $5,000 cash.
US telecomms giant AT&T has apparently blocked 4chan, or bits of it. It seems to have been lifted now, with more info here. In the end, this wasn't a sinister act of censorship, but rather a bit of a mistake and a poorly executed, disproportionate response on AT&T's part. Whoever pulled the trigger on blackholing the site probably didn’t anticipate [nor intend] the consequences of doing so.
Tabris noticed this interesting site full of free educational videos on zillions of topics including maths and physics. We have 800+ videos on YouTube covering everything from basic arithmetic and algebra to differential equations, physics, and finance which have been recorded by Salman Khan.
XbitLabs checked out video driver performance in Win7. The new driver tests we are going to carry out today will be rather unusual. We will test new ATI and Nvidia drivers in the new Windows 7 operating system that promises to have a great future ahead of it.
There's not much info on it, but apparently the new "G2" X25-M SSDs from Intel get confused by BIOS passwords. Intel advises everyone getting a G2 to not create/delete/alter BIOS passwords, at least not until the drive is flashed with an updated firmware that fixes the problem. A new firmware is in the works and is expected to become available soon.
Most ISPs involved in the internet filtering trial have given the technical green light to the plan, report ARN. Of the nine participating ISPs, iPrimus, Netforce, Webshield, Nelson Bay Online and OMNIconnect told ARN they had seen no slowdowns in Internet speeds or problems with the filtering solutions in place.
Microsoft are apparently planning to open some retail shops, with Gizmodo having a sneak peek at what's in store. As a part of our process in briefing creative agencies, we shared some early prototypes and concepts of our retail store plans. No final decisions have been made. As we previously announced, we are on track to open retail stores this Fall.
Fans of Hey Hey It's Saturday will be pleased (if not amazed) to learn there are two live reunion specials planned for later this year. If they rate well, Nine and Somers look certain to negotiate a new series of Hey Hey. Somers was over the moon yesterday. "It is exciting. There's been a lot of talk about the show coming back and it has finally happened," he said.
I had noticed this myself, but it's funny to see others commenting on the strange progression of Evony ads online over the last few months. More info here. To be clear, these are real ads that were served on the internet. This is not a parody.
Wayne sent in this story on DamnInteresting about the first visit to Challenger Deep, the deepest point of the oceans. Moreover, no other vehicle in existence was capable of reaching such depths, which meant that if her float tank became compromised there was no chance of rescue. Nevertheless, the stalwart scientists opted to press on.
Apparently Ubuntu have plans to make Linux application installation idiot-proof. I may know that Amarok, Banshee, Rhythmbox, and Songbird are all noteworthy Linux music players, but come on! Does anyone beside another Linux expert know that? Letting users choose a program by say clicking on "music player" and then picking one makes all the sense in the world.
Meanwhile Techgage checked out SUSE Studio. Linux is well known for being very customizable, but with SUSE Studio, things are taken to an entirely new level. Imagine taking a base template, building on top of it with your personal software choices, then configuring countless other aspects (even a SQL database), and then building it as a bootable ISO or VM. That's exactly what makes SUSE Studio so great.
From edj: the Victoria Police twitter account will be publishing live updates on drunk drivers caught in Victoria - as they occur. More info here. Last night was another disappointing success - more idiots lost their licences for drink-driving & speeding.
A zillion people sent word that Microsoft have released Win7 to manufacturing. With the completion of this development phase, industry partners are readying products in time for the Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 worldwide general launches. Windows 7 will be generally available to customers around the world on October 22, and Windows Server 2008 R2 will be generally available on or before that date.
Intel's "generation 2" X25-M solid state drives are in the wild too, with reviews on HotHardware and PC Perspective. Today we've got a look at Intel's second generation of SSD products, the recently announced 34nm version of the Intel X25-M SSD. At 160GB and a significantly lower price point, Intel is also claiming performance has been taken up a notch or two as well. Meanwhile HWZone compared five SSDs.
It seems they're making a sequel to Tron, the classic "cyberspace" movie from 1982. Tron: Legacy is a 3D high-tech adventure set in a digital world that's unlike anything ever captured on the big screen.
There's an article on PCPro about dodgy PC repair shops in the UK. We also installed Digiwatcher. This devious little tool auto-runs on start-up and quietly tells any connected webcam to secretly film whoever is at the machine. The process is invisible and the video file is hidden on the hard drive and password protected.
From Darmok: Just found this nifty Computer Hardware chart, listing pretty much every socket/interface for the last 20 years! Small version here, Large version here. Careful.. this is a 4000x6000 image... 24meg! Lots of interesting plugs to look at, to satisfy your inner nerd! :)
On Good Game tonight: Exclusive to the show for gamers by gamers, Good Game, Valve Softwares founder and CEO Gabe Newell has revealed an idea for a community-based funding model for games, made possible by the digital distribution platform Steam. Late night before Rage on ABC1 or: Any episode or segment can be downloaded/streamed from www.abc.net.au/goodgame - where we'll also be hosting an extended, 24-minute version of the Gabe Newell interview.
Tweaktown have an article on building a mATX gaming rig. I've been wanting to build a "tiny god" box for years, but it's easier than ever nowadays with quad-core CPUs and enormous hard drives. You can take it one step further like Statts is doing, and build a mini-ITX powerhouse.
Despite the recession, Apple's profits jumped, thanks IntelInside (oddly appropriate username!). Apple said it sold more than 5.2 million iPhones in the quarter, more than seven times what it sold in the 2008 quarter, thanks to a newly-released version of the device. Apple's Mac computers also bolstered results. Apple sold four per cent more Mac computers than a year ago.
Australia's Attorney-General has a discussion paper about legally protecting your own network from attack. Currently, interception legislation only allows national security and law enforcement agencies to protect their networks from malicious software. These provisions are due to expire in December 2009. "The Australian Government is committed to achieving a more secure and trusted electronic operating environment," Mr McClelland said. "Importantly, we need to ensure that legitimate network protection activities do not inadvertently constitute an offence under Commonwealth legislation." There's a PDF with more info here.
Kingston have announced the first 256GB USB thumb drive. "Having the ability to carry over 51,000 images* or a paper tower 1346 metres** tall in such a small format, demonstrates how far flash technology has developed," said said Vaughan Nankivell, Regional Manager- Australia and New Zealand for Kingston Technology. "Users can also safeguard their data by initializing the Password Traveler software which will allow business users and consumers to password protect their data in a privacy zone without the need of administrator rights." Just don't lose it. Also, the press release I have here lists the RRP as AUD $1299.00 for the 256GB one. Ouch!
Meanwhile Intel have finally confirmed details about their next-generation SSDs. The move to 34nm will help lower prices of the SSDs up to 60 percent for PC and laptop makers and consumers who buy them due to the reduced die size and advanced engineering design.
MSI have a competition (website has sound), where you can win a laptop and a holiday to the Great Barrier Reef by making a youtube video. It's open to Australians. Each winner will obtain a free trip and ONE free X Slim notebook. There will be a total of 15 winners.
Microsoft have contributed some Linux drivers to the community. The code, which includes three Linux device drivers, has been submitted to the Linux kernel community for inclusion in the Linux tree. The drivers will be available to the Linux community and customers alike, and will enhance the performance of the Linux operating system when virtualized on Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V or Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V.
Rubberband sent word of a Speed Gaming for Charity effort currently underway (104 hours and counting). These guys are doing a live streaming Final Fantasy marathon for ACT (Autism Care and Treatment), they’re currently playing FFVII.
There's an article here which pretty much sums up my own feelings about the Apollo 11 anniversary (although, I'd perhaps not be quite as strongly stated). In short, it's awesome that we've been to the moon, but it sucks that we haven't been back since 1972.
Queensland Police are declaring war on WiFi freeloaders. Detective Superintendent Brian Hay said criminals were piggy-backing on the WiFi connections of ordinary computer users and using them to anonymously commit crimes such as fraud and identity theft.
If you're wondering why you haven't heard much about the internet filtering project lately, it's because it's way behind schedule. The admission of delays makes it unlikely that the Government will be able to consider the final results of the trials and make a decision of whether or not to push through ISP-level filtering by the end of the year.
Brains spotted this info about cooling a supercomputer. The article is about a year old but still interesting. The chilled water required to provide cooling for bluefire had to be obtained (tapped) from the existing, dual 450-ton water chillers. In addition, to mitigate the impact of a power outage where NCAR's water chillers would fail over to the twin backup system, two 1,500-gallon chilled water storage tanks were installed in the NCAR machine room.
XbitLabs compared professional graphics cards. Professional graphics cards for performance workstations occupy a completely different market niche than the gaming solutions, even though they are manufactured by the same developers. Today we are going to check out the performance of these graphics cards from AMD and Nvidia in popular CAD/CAM systems for professionals. Especially since both manufacturers now have new card series on contemporary 55 nm chips: Quadro FX and FirePro.
BFM wants to show us Siftables. Siftables are cookie-sized computers with motion sensing, neighbor detection, graphical display, and wireless communication. They act in concert to form a single interface: users physically manipulate them - piling, grouping, sorting - to interact with digital information and media. Siftables provides a new platform on which to implement tangible, visual and mobile applications. There's an older thread here about them, hopefully people will find them more interesting nowadays. :)
The New York Times have an article on a recent ironic event where some of George Orwell's books were mysteriously deleted from people's Kindle ebook readers. However it turns out to be due to illegal publication rather than a big brother conspiracy. When Amazon discovered these unauthorized sales, it did the right thing: it reversed them. The police would do the same thing if they discovered a stolen car in your driveway: just take it away. You never owned it.
Rumours continue about Intel's next-generation SSDs. According to the generally reliable Golum, Intel's so-called Postville SSD family is well on its way to reality, and with them should come much needed price drops. The new series should top out at 320GB, with an 80GB and 160GB version falling underneath.
XbitLabs check out modern video cards in the game "Call of Juarez: Bound in Blood". Our today’s article will talk about the performance of contemporary graphics cards in a sequel to a famous Western shooter - Call of Juarez.
Guru3D have a similar article, using Anno 1404: Dawn of Discovery. The 3D engine is smooth, beautifully detailed. We'll take 15 graphics cards to the test with this title and will show you what you can expect per graphics card and monitor resolution.
InsideHW meanwhile rounded up 23 hard drives. In very near future we can predict transitional period where SSD will be used as system drive while HDD will be used as data storage. Since SSD prices are not showing significant drop tendency, we will be using HDDs for some time in the future. So, we decided to make, maybe for the last time, big hard drive roundup.
Gazzamcgazza sent in an article about the Airbus A330's recent issues. However, Tardivat and Hounsfield agree that the ultimate problem may lie somewhere else entirely - with the 100-odd miles of insulated wire connecting everything from computers to seat-back televisions. Ed Block, an American air investigator, has long been trying to draw attention to the dangers of some wire types.
Today's timewaster is the beta of Hackcess, a "web based network security MMO" which seems to have a pretty strong following on OCAU already, with a thread here.
(link) Saturday, 18-July-2009 09:45:19 (GMT +10) - by Agg
Work has officially begun on the National Broadband Network in Tasmania. That means Tasmanians will be first to try out the 100 megabit-per-second network, while the construction will also serve as a learning process for the wider roll-out in mainland Australia.
A few people sent word that the Government is also going to tackle illegal file sharing. In a report unveiled at the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney last night, Senator Stephen Conroy, Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, said the Government, among other promises, will "facilitate development of an appropriate solution to the issue of unauthorised file sharing".
ThePirateBay will apparently become a paid site. For years The Pirate Bay's users have been able to share files without censorship or charges, but this is all about to change. Rosso said that under the new management, the 3.7 million Pirate Bay users (or whatever userbase remains) will have to pay a monthly fee to access the site. Hrm, good luck with that.
TechWareLabs can apparently tell you how to mod your 1.5TB Seagate to Velociraptor speeds. Actually it's the old "only use the first part of the drive" trick, but it's worth re-considering nowadays. As I mentioned the drive is now a 300GB drive for all purposes. Look at it this way, the 300GB Western Digital Velociraptor is approximately ~$229 while the price of the Seagate 1.5TB drive is approximately ~$119 at the time of this writing. Now what you end up with is a drive that is higher in performance in all regards except seek times at a lower cost per GB. And when you get bored, unlock the 1.2TB again.
Another person has been stung by excess charges, with two movie downloads costing them $602. Jack downloaded the movies over 3's mobile internet using a $29 monthly plan. He had 3.5GB of included downloads, with an excess fee of 10c per MB. However, with a single high-definition movie reaching over 4GB, Jack should have used his wired home broadband - which has a much larger download limit.
If you think that's bad, Phalanx sent word of a glitch where some people's Visa cards were charged $23,148,855,308,184,500. He noticed that his debt exceeded the world GDP while making a routine balance inquiry on his online Bank of America account.
Yoink has made a special 10th Birthday version of the OCAU Avatar Mosaic. This time it's got a cool viewer which makes navigation a bit easier. I haven't found my avatar yet, can you find yours? Or mine? :) Hrm, back to scouring the green section..
There's a discussion thread here and you can see the previous avatar mosaic from 2004 here.
Well, here we are. Today, amazingly enough, is OCAU's 10th Birthday. That's right, it was 10 years ago that I was jumping through hoops to register overclockers.com.au. There's been a huge amount of water under the bridge since then, and to be honest so much of it has become a blur by now I don't really know where to begin. But to find myself running a website with 100,000 members, serving around half a million pages a day, is just mind-boggling.
There's not too much to announce right now in terms of celebrations, because the recent server move (and the hopefully soon re-move) has tied me up quite a bit, not to mention my life being derailed by two weeks of flu and small children etc. But over the next little while I hope to get some more OCAU merchandise organised, as well as some BBQ's and giveaways, similar to the 5th birthday celebrations.
I must give a quick thanks to OCAU's sponsors, particularly Scorpion Technology and of course Computer Alliance, who have been supporting the site for almost its entire life! Thanks of course also to the admins, newsmonkeys and the rest of the members who make the site such a cool place to hang out. :)
Who knows what the future will bring - there's certainly been a lot of changes in the industry and the online world in general over the last few years. But I hope to be writing a similar message in 5 years time, 10 years time, and further on down the line. OCAU will probably be something you stick in your ear that shows you funny pictures by then, who knows. :) Thanks for being part of it!
OCZ have a new Vertex Turbo SSD. OCZ Vertex Turbo Series provides a cutting-edge design for enthusiasts looking to transform their desktops or laptops. Enabled by a proprietary firmware and 64MB of 180MHz DRAM cache, the Vertex Turbo Edition ramps up performance levels to new heights, while providing the snappy computing, longer battery life, and shorter boot-ups users have enjoyed from the original.
Patriot meanwhile have doubled their SSD cache and added a 10-year warranty. The Torqx M28 SSD has been specifically designed with cutting-edge technology by increasing the DRAM cache from 64MB to 128MB of cache in conjunction with its current NAND flash technology. The ultimate result is an SSD that allows faster transfer rates between the controller and the host device. Compared to today's hard drives, the Torqx SSD provides for better stability, faster access times, and lower power consumption.
ReloadedLAN have announced their 2010 event (PDF). Reloaded will be held from January 16th to January 17th, in 2010 at the St Clair Recreation Centre in Woodville, with a special launch event to be held at Valhalla LAN Parties July 18th event. Major partners include, Valhalla LAN Parties, AVCON and the South Australian Government.
Seagate have a new enterprise-class hard drive, the Cheetah 15K.7. 600GB, 15k-rpm, 6GB/s SAS in a 3.5" package. Together, these features enable system builders to deliver lower-cost, multi-drive servers and storage systems, making the Cheetah 15K.7 ideal for use in environments ranging from small and medium-sized businesses to the largest enterprises. Product page here.
Super Talent have a 128GB USB Flash Drive with hardware encryption. Is this the first 128GB drive? The new 128GB Luxio drive is smaller in size than most competing 64GB USB drives, measuring approximately 77 x 21 x 10 mm (3.0 x 0.81 x 0.37 inches). The pocket-sized drive stores up to 40,000 six megapixel photos or up to 32,000 MP3 songs. The 128GB Luxio is offered in three colors: black, silver and wood grain, and is packaged in an elegant gift box. Each drive comes with a custom black leather carrying case. Windows 7 compatible Luxio drives are now available in capacities from 16GB to 128GB. Product page here.
Swiftech have announced a Master Distributor for the Australia and New Zealand markets. "We are very excited to be distributing Swiftech products in our region" said Louis Mittoni CEO of Mittoni Pty Ltd, "resellers looking for simpler sourcing as well as increasing demand from many retailers for Swiftech product ensures that the brand will build significantly upon its previous success, and we're very proud to become a part of this development".
SMH have an article about ZGeek's defamation lawsuit. There's an update on ZGeek's site too, altho it's not entirely clear where things stand re future action about the same complaint. But now, some even worse news. ZGeek is abandoning Australia. ZGeek as a company has been shut down and any future of the site conducting business in Australia is just not going to happen until the laws change as they offer no protection for internet content hosts based in Australia.
ACMA has re-launched its Cybersmart web site. The front page of the Cybersmart.gov.au web site now directs users to several sub-sites based on the user - with one site specific to "kids", another specific to "young kids", another for parents, another for teenage users, and a "schools gateway" for teachers.
Qantas recently refused to show an ad by GetUp parodying internet censorship, because they don't allow political advertising onboard. I know a lot of people are annoyed about this, but I don't really see a conspiracy. It's close enough to a political ad that they didn't want it. Fair enough. Anyway, there's a website associated with the ad which is pretty funny - check it out here.
Driverheaven have a roundup of X58 boards posted, for your Core i7 / LGA1366 processors. First up on the review bench is the top model in the Asus P6T desktop family, the P6T Deluxe V2, it competes against two high performance boards from Foxconn, the FlamingBlade and BloodRage GTI. Read on to find out which best meets your requirements in regards to performance and functionality.
Bjorn3D have a guide to making an NTFS USB Boot Disk. I've started doing installs from a USB stick lately, it's so convenient! Suddenly this morning I found myself thinking wouldn't it be nice to be able to boot to a USB disk with the NTFS file system and run diagnostics, memory tests, and maybe install Vista or XP from a USB disk.
IGN ponder the Top 10 Best Game Engines of the current generation. Over the following pages we'll take you through the very best engines in next-gen gaming. These are the big guns, proudly championed by their creators and delivering to you the finest gaming experiences on the planet. These are what turn good creative ideas into great gameplay.
PCPerspective reckon there's some issues delaying the availability of SATA 6G. Gigabyte is also apparently taking the same actions: they are pulling the Marvell 88SE9123 SATA 6G chips from all of their P55 motherboards. In fact, many Gigabyte offerings were to have TWO Marvell chips on them supporting 4 channels of SATA 6G - obviously now that is out the window. Initially when contacting the motherboard vendor, they seemed optimistic that it would be able to fix the problem before the P55 launch window. That apparently has changed in the last 48 hours and Gigabyte made the decision to pull the feature.
We knew he'd been nominated, but it turns out Senator Stephen Conroy has actually won the Internet Villain Award as handed out by the UK Internet Industry. Nice work, Senator! Stephen Conroy and the Australian Government - "For continuing to promote network-level blocking despite significant national and international opposition"
Jason pointed out that NASA are re-enacting Apollo 11 on a new website, We Choose The Moon. I seem to be having some Flash issues here, but hopefully I'll be able to check it out soon.
iXBT have posted part one of their guide to choosing a processor. In this article we are going to answer one simple and at the same time very difficult question: how to choose a CPU? We decided to collect the mandatory basic information you must know to make an educated choice, and teach you how to choose.
AMD have released three new six-core Opteron HE processors. The 55W ACP Six-Core AMD Opteron HE processors are currently shipping for 2-, 4- and 8-P systems and available today in new systems from HP, addressing the needs of dynamic, performance hungry and power constrained data centers. Systems from additional OEMs are expected to come to market throughout Q309.
LegionHW have an AM3 memory performance guide. It is fair to say that just about anything goes, as we found timings and even frequency had little impact on performance, at least within reason. Naturally no one is going to use DDR3 memory clocked at 800MHz, and even 1066MHz memory is really out of the question as it's almost impossible to buy.
Stephen Fry, one of my favourite celebrities, has admitted he's a pirate. But it came good in the end. In a speech about copyright and the future of music introduced by Stuff’s editor-in-chief Tom Dunmore, Fry poured scorn on the music industry for attacking the public in file-sharing cases. "Making an example of ordinary people is the stupidest thing the record industry can do," he said.
Monday Night Reviews
(link) Monday, 13-July-2009 13:29:50 (GMT +10) - by Agg
From Jeremy: Big news in the Good Game camp this week, as last month revealed the show for gamers by gamers to be the #1 downloaded show in the ABC! Good Game narrowly topped favourites Media Watch and Triple J TV. ... You can catch Good Game on Monday nights @ 8:30pm on ABC2, as well as late Friday nights on ABC1 just before rage. Download any ep at www.abc.net.au/goodgame.
Mad Mike sent in this video about the debilitating condition of First-Person Shooter Disease. Funny stuff. Duke Nukem's disease is a scary one, Gene brings you the story of the life of a First Person Shooter.
Another recent video is this Office 2010: The Movie trailer, which seems to be from Microsoft, or could be a parody, but given the weird barfing ads they've been putting out lately, who knows. Anyway, it's pretty funny, even if it continues their trend of telling you nothing whatsoever about the product.
InsideHW have a nine-way CPU cooler roundup posted. Since we are testing products from mid and high class segment, our choice of Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550 as testing CPU is logical, while ASUS Rampage Formula is used as base for our testing rig. Room temperature was set at 23 degrees Celsius. If you wonder why we didn't test same coolers with AMD CPUs the answer is simple: when it comes to CPU coolers, it doesn't matter what CPU is underneath it if the cooler is good.
Hexus have an interview with Corsair about some recent quality issues. What we've seen is a higher-than-expected field failure rate with our Elpida Hyper-based Dominator GT modules. This is something the enthusiast community started to see a while ago, but we weren't sure at first if it wasn't just related to the fact that most of them were pushing them as hard as possible, upping voltages and clock dividers, pouring liquid nitrogen or liquid helium on them and so on.
Today's timewaster is this free browser version of Street Fighter II CE. Continuing the recent spate of free releases of 1990s classics, Capcom and GameTap have now released a browser-based version of Street Fighter II CE.
Urgghh.. over a week of this killer flu now. My face aches.
HyRax1 spotted a Free "Ubuntu Linux Secrets" eBook available for download. As it says - this book is now out of date (circa Ubuntu 8.10) and is thus now available for free download. At nearly 840 pages and 14.4MB, why not? Could be handy.
XbitLabs check out mainstream GPU performance in MMORPGs. Again, the point of such games is not in eye-popping visuals but rather in the opportunity to interact with other players. Therefore a MMORPG gamer may appreciate an inexpensive card with passive cooling, especially as many such gamers play at nights and want to have a quiet computer nearby.
Gizmodo played around with Windows 7 Touch Pack. I scored one of the only copies of Windows 7 Touch Pack out in the wild, and it really blew my mind, bringing the full power of Microsoft Surface to touch-enabled Win 7 PCs.
Check out this impressive GPU milking machine, one hell of a folding box. I am still working on issues getting all 6 GPUs to post. If I can getting it fully functional I will load it with 6 GTX 295s and pop the 100Kppd ceiling with one rig.
HWZone have a Lynnfield Core i5 preview. You probably have seen a handful of Intel P55 motherboards during our Computex 2009 coverage, but today we've one up-close from ASUS - complete with a Core i5 Lynnfield processor as well. Join us as we delve in detail with the ASUS P7P55D Evo motherboard and what to expect in September 2009.
OCModShop interviewed Pete Hines of Bethesda Softworks about the merger of iD Software with ZeniMax media. What effect will this have on future ID releases such as Rage and Quake 5? Will we see future Doom games? Will Id move away from PC games towards consoles? Will there be any changes to Quake Con?
ZDNet have an article about the companies behind the race to the moon as we approach the 40th anniversary of Apollo 11. The manufacturing of the Saturn V was the most ambitious and complicated multi-contractor construction and assembly project ever created or executed by the US aerospace industry. Endeavour is hopefully going to launch in 15 hours but it's been delayed three times already and the weather isn't looking great.
You might remember the OCAU Avatar Mosaic from a few years ago. Well, yoink is doing another one to celebrate OCAU's 10th anniversary - and he's capturing the forum avatars tomorrow at noon. So if you want to change your avatar to something special for the occasion, do it now. :)
After two cancelled launches, Endeavour should launch on the weekend, weather permitting. Liftoff is scheduled for Saturday at 7:39 p.m. Due to expected showers, thunderstorms and anvil clouds in the area, the launch weather forecast continues to be 40 percent "go."
EFA have more info on ZGeek's lawsuit. The website operator may well have a defence under Australian law, but there is still significant uncertainty as to what is required of a forum moderator in Australia. We lack solid immunities and appropriate notice & takedown procedures, which means that operators of public fora can never be certain as to their potential liability - something that significantly harms freedom of expression in Australia.
A Spanish judge has ruled that downloading copyright files is legal, as long as it's not for profit. n a recent Spanish court case, an eD2K P2P website that specialises in recent release movies was brought to court by the country's leading entertainment copyright coalition, hoping to target 200 individual downloaders for their so-called 'crimes' of downloading.
Tech Report look back at storage performance. Over the years, our storage test rig has run through 70 desktop and notebook hard drives, SSDs, and exotic RAM disks. We've compiled all our test data for a massive retrospective that explores storage capacity and performance scaling over nearly the last half-decade.
Meanwhile HotHardware have an SSD RAID grudge match. We've certainly heard of Fusion-io's bleeding edge PCI Express-based SSD solution but to date haven't yet gotten the chance to check it out on the test bench here at HotHardware. In addition, though we've put Intel's wonderfully fast X25-M SSD through its paces in stand-alone testing, imagine what it would be like with up to four drives in RAID 0. You see where we're going here, a battle royal of what is arguably some of the fastest SSD storage technology money can buy right now.
Apparently a combination of turbulence and terrain led to Steve Fossett's death, thanks Wayne. His single-engine, two-seater plane crashed near Mammoth Lakes, California, "following an inadvertent encounter with downdrafts that exceeded the climb capability of the airplane", the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said.
Thursday Night Reviews
(link) Thursday, 9-July-2009 13:42:57 (GMT +10) - by Agg
Australian site ZGeek.com is apparently being sued for defamation over some comments made by their forum members, thanks Enthalpy. I have enough now to get things started. I'll find out how serious this is tomorrow and we'll play it by ear and I'll update you when I can. Until then it's business as usual!! A massive thanks to all those who have donated (and those who have wished us well!). You guys have seriously blown me away with your generosity.
Tech Report consider rational backup strategies. Like many of us, my history of backup management is shameful, littered with poorly labeled DVD-Rs, manual file copies, and a minimum of forethought. Yet with relative ease, I was recently able to build a much more rational backup scheme that is, by and large, automated in software.
Adam sent word that Google are taking on Windows with Chrome OS. "Google Chrome OS is being created for people who spend most of their time on the web, and is being designed to power computers ranging from small netbooks to full-size desktop systems," Google says.
From Rob: Interesting story about how a now former employee stole a copy of Goldman's advanced stock buying software (stuff that buys in a zillionth of a second then sells when everyone else starts buying).
DriverHeaven took an AMD TWKR BE to 6GHz+. We are one of the few sites to get a sample of this processor which isn't being sold in the market. We overclocked it on Vapo and managed to get over 6GHZ out of it - which makes it the fastest AMD CPU we have ever tested.
Futurelooks have more info on the Opera Unite sharing service we mentioned recently. These are all viable options, but none of them offer the same unique features as the latest release of Opera. That’s because we’re looking a new service called Opera Unite. With Opera Unite technology, they are "radically extending what you are able to do online."
PCPerspective have info on the CausticGL Ray Tracing API. In today's article we are going to take a look in more detail at the software side of Caustic Graphics CausticRT platform - CausticGL. Though I am a far cry from a rendering engine developer I think the technical brief that Caustic provided for us should allow me to share some interesting thoughts and comparisons to other graphics APIs.
Timbot sent in this USB chainsaw. Measuring no larger than the size of a regular computer keyboard, every effort has been made to ensure that proper grip - and safety - is not compromised. So who's going to be the first to mod it with a Wiimote and make it a controller for DOOM? :)
Ma Baker sent word that there's only 2 days left to vote in this month's Iron Chef. Choose the entry that you think best articulates the theme for Iron Chef June 2009: Mushrooms. Whose cuisine will reign supreme? Let the voting begin! Holy cow, there's some yummy-looking stuff in that thread.
HotHardware checked out high-performance ITX solutions from Zotac, SilverStone and Intel. If you find the idea of a tiny small form factor machine appealing but can't stand the limited performance and lack of customizability of current "nettops", then listen up.
HardOCP took a look at SSD RAID scaling under Windows 7. For today's article we are going to show you guys what a lot of you can expect when you jump on the Windows 7 bandwagon and slap together some RAID-0 SSD awesomeness with a sprinkle of the Intel ICH10R Southbridge aka x58 chipset. Just for good measure we are going to toss in some charts when running a dedicated RAID card to see what, if any, boost can be expected from such a setup.
Meanwhile TechReport looked at SSD performance in Vista. Our last SSD round-up caused quite a stir for using an older test system with Windows XP. We've now explored SSD performance on more current hardware with Vista x64 SP2, and you might be surprised by the results.
HWZone investigated graphics driver upgrades. ATI and NVIDIA release new drivers nearly every month with a promise of better performance and greater efficiency. We take cards from both makers and run them with drivers released in the past year to see how they handle performance, power and temperature concerns. Are the driver updates worth your time? iXBTLabs have a similar article.
Tweakguides cover Firefox 3.5. I have revised the Firefox Tweak Guide for all the changes in Firefox 3.5. The guide not only contains descriptions of the new features, as well as all existing features, it has every major tips and tweak required to customize Firefox 3.5 to suit your needs and get the most out of this browser.
HardCoreWare show you how to use a PS3 controller with your PC. This new guide explains how to get full control of the Playstation 3 controller in all versions of Windows - including 32-bit and 64-bit, XP, Vista, and Windows 7. The illustrated guide will take you through all the steps, and in the end you will get a fully functional PS3 controller in any version of Windows you want - including Bluetooth connectivity, SixAxis control, and DualShock support.
LegitReviews have been overclocking their MSI Wind U100 Netbook. MSI recently released a BIOS update that includes overclocking features in the BIOS for the Wind U100 netbook series. Once this feature is enabled in the BIOS you can select a CPU overclock of either 8%, 15% or 24%, for a maximum overclock of 2GHz. Read on to see how far we can overclock our U100 and to see what overclocking does for performance.
There's been three new dinosaurs discovered in Australia recently. The skeletons of Matilda & Banjo were found together at bottom of an ancient billabong. For some reason that reads in Steve Irwin's voice for me.
The future head of MI6 is in hot water thanks to his wife's facebook postings. In what the Mail on Sunday called an "extraordinary lapse", the new spy chief's wife, Lady Shelley Sawers, posted family pictures and exposed details of where the couple live and take their holidays and who their friends and relatives are.
NASA's Lunar Reconaissance Orbiter has sent back photos of the moon. The spacecraft's two cameras, collectively known as the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera, or LROC, were activated June 30. The cameras are working well and have returned images of a region in the lunar highlands south of Mare Nubium (Sea of Clouds).
Dell have been ordered by Taiwan's consumer regulators to honour an online pricing mistake, thanks mysrh. News of the supposed bargain spread quickly over the internet when it was posted June 25 at 11pm. Within the eight hours before it was removed, more than 26,000 customers placed orders for nearly 140,000 monitors, according to Taiwan's Consumer Protection Commission. Ouch. But why are similar screwups never enforced here?
Danny sends word that Windows 7 will be sent to manufacturers on 13th July, according to the latest rumours, but it won't be on shelves until late October. After a year of furious beta testing and continuous leaks every other week, Microsoft is finally ready to give Windows 7 the green light to hit the market. Currently the Windows 7 team is working on polishing off the RTM build so that no show-stopper bugs are present in Windows 7. The date, July 13, also coincides with the kickoff of the Worldwide Partner Conference that is taking place in New Orleans.
An Easter Egg has been found in Donkey Kong, 26 years after release. That is a set of conditions so specific I can't imagine anyone discovering the egg without prying apart the code, much less knowing how to repeat it. Hodges shows how he found it in the code, using an emulator.
The ever-popular mandatory internet filter may be extended to online games. That means browser-based or downloaded games, or online roleplaying games such as the popular World of Warcraft, will be blocked in Australia if it contains content deemed inappropriate for anyone under the age of 15. Can't really see how that's going to work, apart from a wholesale ban of the game, which is mental.
Queensland's Health Commission has nearly completed virtualising their IT infrastructure. When information systems manager Steven Moskwa joined the commission in 2007 the impending desktop and server refresh became the main impetus for an integrated virtual server and desktop environment which would also enable better remote access. Hrm, that name seems familiar. ;)
Saturday Night Reviews
(link) Saturday, 4-July-2009 13:38:24 (GMT +10) - by Agg
The RIAA has chalked up another victory, this time against usenet.com. According to court documents (PDF warning), the Usenet service is guilty of direct infringement, inducement of infringement, contributory infringement, and vicarious infringement. The ruling also said that Usenet.com cannot claim protection under the 1984 Sony Betamax decision which states that companies selling devices cannot be held liable for infringement despite the actions of the buyer.
OCInside.de have an english-language Phenom II unlocking guide. It is already well-known that one can unlock the fourth core of a triple core AMD Phenom II CPU. But during a test of the current ASRock A790GXH/128M motherboard at ocinside.de it was possible to unlock much more than this and that is no April joke. The AMD Phenom II 710 X3 CPU became an Engineering Sample with four CPU cores, unlocked Vcore selection and unlocked multiplier !
The London Stock Exchange is moving from Windows to Linux for its trading platform. I'm sure the LSE management couldn't tell Linux from Windows without a techie at hand. They can tell, however, when their business comes to a complete stop in front of the entire world.
Spammers have been ordered to pay $3.7M USD in fines. The commission settled with three defendants in the case -- Spear Systems and two individuals, one in the U.S. and one in Australia -- in May 2008.
Top story of the moment would have to be that ThePirateBay has been sold to a software company. The company says that after it has completed the acquisition it will launch new business models so that copyright owners get paid, which is clearly a huge diversion from TPB’s previous modus operandi.
Sony have apparently applied for a patent for PS2 compatability on PS3's, entirely emulated. So maybe people (like me) with 40GB PS3s and other models lacking native PS2 compatability will be able to get our oldschool gaming fix. Interpretation is like having someone constantly translating English to Japanese for you, non stop, twenty four hours a day wherever you go. Decoding and recompiling is like someone translating a sets of words and putting them in a dictionary you can reference.
Check out this carnivorous clock that eats bugs. The ensuing chemical reaction, or "digestion," is transformed into power that keeps the rollers rollin' and the LCD clock ablaze. The pair offers an alternative design fueled by mice, another contraption whose robotic arm plucks insect-fuel from spider webs with the help of a video camera, and a lamp powered by insects lured to their deaths with ultraviolet LEDs. Man, this is so wrong it has to be right.
China is apparently banning gold farming in online gaming. The trading of virtual currency for real cash employs hundreds of thousands of people worldwide and generates between $200 million and $1 billion annually, according to a 2008 survey conducted by Richard Heeks at the University of Manchester. He estimates that between 80% and 85% of gold farmers are based in China. Discussion here.
If you're addicted to energy drinks like me, you might want to get your hands on NASA's sports drink, now available to the public. Scientists at NASA's Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif., put 15 years of research into the drink's development. NASA astronauts have been drinking the formula on missions for nearly 20 years.
IGN toured Blizzard's studio recently. Last week IGN AU was lucky enough to head over to Blizzard's HQ in California to play the latest multiplayer build of StarCraft II.
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