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August 2010
Tuesday Night (10 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 31-August-2010  12:49:09 (GMT +10) - by Agg

I haven't tried it myself yet, but Dopefish sent word that a free 1-year subscription to AVG AV Pro can be snaffled from V3.co.uk. This promotion is available between midday CET Tuesday 31st of August and midday CET Wednesday 1st of September 2010. CET is "Central European Time". If the promotion runs out of serial codes before midday CET 1st of September 2010, this promotion will expire automatically.

A video blog called DataCenterPulse has checked out a very cool converted cold war bunker in Sweden which now houses a datacentre. It is located in a bunker 30 meters under solid bedrock. It was a cold war bunker that was converted into this datacenter and is said to be able to withstand a Hydrogen bomb blast. It is very unique and reminds me of a James Bond movie!

There's a patent war brewing over Marty McFly's shoes. Based on Marty McFly's auto-lacing shoes from Back to the Future II, they feature a motorised self-lacing system and the video of them in operation drew over a million views on YouTube.

The latest sites to tackle Mafia II performance are TechSpot and TechGage. So with a new full version copy of Mafia II loaded onto our test system and two dozen graphics cards lined up ready to test, we set about to deliver another GPU & CPU performance article. Not only have we tested a huge range of graphics cards, but we will also look at the impact PhysX has on performance with and without a dedicated card. As usual, we'll also take a quick look at CPU scaling performance for those concerned if they have the necessary guts on that front as well.

Wynode sent in an article clarifying the earlier plane crash malware story. But even if the headquarters office had maintained its PC perfectly, the plane would still have taken off. The mechanics were still entering their report at the time of the crash, and as a May 2010 report in the same newspaper noted, the headquarters office had a custom of entering data 24 hours after it was received.



Tuesday Evening (1 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 31-August-2010  10:31:10 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Daron sent word of a handy website from the NSW Fire Brigades that helps you assess your home fire safety. The easy-to-use online audit guides families through various rooms in their homes including the kitchen, bedroom, laundry and garage to identify key fire risks particular to their home and habits. I experienced a relatively minor house fire in 1993, but that was terrifying enough! Cats and candles are a bad mix.

Gmail has a new feature, the Priority Inbox. Email is great, except when there’s too much of it. Priority Inbox automatically identifies your important email and separates it out from everything else, so you can focus on what really matters.

NASA have released a new collection of historical photos on Flickr. Three compilations of images from more than half a century of NASA history are available for comment on a section of the photo-sharing site Flickr known as The Commons. Visitors to NASA on The Commons can help tell the photos' story by adding tags, or keywords, to the images to identify objects and people.

From Tony: To celebrate the MSI BEAT IT competition in China this weekend MSI are giving 3 lucky winners the chance to walk away with a brand new GT660 Laptop. Australia's very own Team Immunity flies out tomorrow in order to compete against some of the best teams in the world. In order to win you need to simply predict the winners of the competition and enter your details on the website. It's a great opportunity for Australian gamers to take part and win some great prizes.



Monday Night Reviews (2 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 30-August-2010  13:51:36 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Audio Visual:
Samsung EX1 10-Megapixel Digital Camera on ThinkComputers.
ATI Eyefinity Active DisplayPort Adapter on NeoSeeker.
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1 Micro Four Thirds Camera on FutureLooks.

Motherboard & CPU:
ECS P55H-AK Black Series LGA1156 board on TBreak.
Gigabyte H55M-USB3 LGA1156 board on Bjorn3D.
Gigabyte X58A-UD9 LGA1366 board on Guru3D.

Storage:
ADATA S596 Turbo 128Gb SSD with JMicron's new JMF616 controller on FunkyKit.
Vantec Nexstar CX SuperSpeed USB 3.0 Hard Drive Enclosure on Tweaknews.
Seagate GoFlex Desk 3TB External USB Hard Drive on EverythingUSB.

Power Supply:
NZXT HALE90 750W on OCOnline.
Cooler Master USNA 95 mobile power supply unit on InsideHW.

Cooling:
Nexus FLC-3000 R2 vs. CoolIT ECO A.L.C on RBMods.
Scythe Ninja 3 CPU Cooler on XbitLabs.
Corsair H70 CPU cooler on OCClub.
SilenX iXtrema EFFIZIO EFZ-120HA4 Extreme Silent CPU Cooler on Tweaktown.
Prolimatech MK-13 VGA Cooler on OC3D.

Misc:
AXLE GeForce GTX 460 Ace 1GB video card on TechPowerUp.
Genius MaxFire Pandora-Pro USB Mini Gamepad on BenchmarkReviews.
Cooler Master Choiix Comforter Lapdesk on LegitReviews.
QPad K5 vs Sharkoon FireGlider mice on FunkyKit.



Monday Night (3 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 30-August-2010  10:46:31 (GMT +10) - by Agg

AMD have announced they will be officially killing off the ATi brand, replacing it with AMD branding. Info on Tech Report, Anandtech and PC Perspective. Furthermore, AMD tells us it feels confident in making this change right now because its graphics business is "on a roll," having surpassed rival Nvidia in discrete graphics shipments last quarter, according to analyst estimates, and having secured high-profile design wins with the likes of Apple. Discussion here.

XbitLabs have a few comparisons, with GeForce GTX 460 SLI vs. Radeon HD 5970 in the video card arena, and Thermalright Silver Arrow vs. Noctua NH-D14 and Thermalright HR-02 vs. Noctua NH-D14 on the cooling side of things. Thermalright is trying to regain its leading positions in the market by launching two new air coolers for central processors. Have they managed to accomplish their ultimate goal?

BnH1 sent in this interesting article about startups by ex-Googlers. Many of these Xooglers (yes, that’s what former Googlers call themselves) have decided to scale down and start-up. Xoogler-founded businesses are making headlines everywhere as they are acquired by Google (Google), its competitors, find funding from other Xooglers, and blaze new trails on the web. Here are 15 companies that have sprung forth from the minds of those who once staffed the web giant.

iXBTLabs have done some CPUID fiddling to see how Intel's compiler deals with different CPUs. There's also a dispatcher that selects the needed code path. Thanks to Agner Fog, who has found out how to change the CPUID data of the VIA Nano processor, we now can conduct an independent "fairness" test and see what's going on.

Today's timewaster is Type Racer, where you can compete with other fast typists.



Forum Projects (1 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 29-August-2010  09:53:52 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Some more interesting things from the forums:


Uncle-Fester reviewed the
ASUS Rampage 3 Gene

windwithme checked out the
ATI Radeon HD 5570 OC

WuzzA21 spruced up
his watercooled PC


bundymania compared lots
of watercooling tubing

roamin scratch-built a
perspex workbench case

C0L0N3L made a DIY
photographic beauty dish


T4rce has a watercooled
AC2-themed mini machine

ruro has a worklog
for his watercooled and custom PC

Just-Right upgraded
his car stereo



Sunday Afternoon (3 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 29-August-2010  05:13:54 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Hope your weekend's coming along nicely.. I've had a very pleasant day with my kids at a local cycle track park, watching RC planes whizzing about.

Firstly a reminder from Marcus that there are some dodgy companies ringing Australians, claiming to be on behalf of Microsoft or Dell etc, telling people they have a virus and charging to fix it or arranging long-term support contracts. I doubt most OCAU readers would be suckered in by these scammers, but maybe warn your less tech-savvy friends or relatives etc.

Not too surprisingly, Sony are not happy about the recent "PS3 Jailbreak" development and have gone legal with the Federal Court of Australia imposing a temporary injunction on selling the gadget in question. Court documents indicate the injunction will remain in place until a hearing scheduled for Tuesday that could determine the permanent fate of the modchip in Australia, and have consequences for the device in other countries, as well.

Commodore USA are apparently making a C64 replica PC with modern Atom-powered internals. This also paves the way for the company's newest offering, the Commodore PC64, an Intel Atom-powered PC featuring 4GB DDR3 memory, SATA 1TB HDD, HDMI output, optical drive (either DVD/CD or optional Blu-ray), and more -- all in "an exact replica" of the original beige C64 chassis.

Worryingly, it seems malware on a USB stick may have contributed to a plane crash which killed 154 people in Spain. The report indicates that the computer failed to detect three problems (including one issue with the airplane's wing flaps being in the incorrect position for takeoff) in a fail-safe monitoring system and that those problems were brought on by a malicious program that came from the USB thumb drive.

InformationWeek meanwhile say that 25% of malware is designed for USB propagation. "Not only does it copy itself to these gadgets, but it also runs automatically when a USB device is connected to a computer, infecting the system practically transparently to the user. This has been the case with many infections we have seen this year, such as the distribution of the Mariposa and Vodafone botnets."

Google have a new Realtime Search, which isn't quite as exciting as it sounds, being a search engine for Twitter, Facebook and other social sites. Realtime Search lets you see up-to-the-second social updates, news articles and blog posts about hot topics around the world.

Goose1981 spotted this SSD which fits in a DIMM slot. The company's decided to "borrow" the DIMM form factor for its latest enterprise SSD offering, equipping it with a 240-pin array to draw power from your spare memory slots. Of course, you'll still need to hook up a SATA cable to get data flowing to this SSD -- at a very respectable 260MBps for both read and write -- but we must admit we're in love with the very idea of it. Quite a neat idea for the super-mini modders.

d00dz noticed this study of HDD reliability by a data-recovery firm. The Russian company Storelab, an Eastern European market leader in professional data recovery, is known for analysis and professional guidance published on its website. Storelab recently published the results of a long-term study based on its own operations and the observed failure rates of certain hard drives from leading manufacturers.

Paul Allen, co-founder of Microsoft, is busting out the lawsuits against various technology companies for patent infringement. Through his current firm, Interval Licensing LLC, Allen is suing Apple, Google, AOL, Facebook, ebay, Netflix, Office Depot, OfficeMax, Staples, Yahoo, and YouTube (which is a subsidiary of Google). The claims involve four separate patents, most of which cover integral parts of how the companies named do business.

The top secret X-37B shuttle has been doing odd things in orbit lately, including vanishing for two weeks. It took amateur skywatcher Greg Roberts of Cape Town, South Africa, who noticed that it failed to appear as scheduled above his base on August 14, another five days to find it. When he did, he noticed it was some 30km higher and on a different trajectory, according to calculations from other colleagues in Rome and Oklahoma.



Saturday Night Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 28-August-2010  12:06:47 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Motherboard & CPU:
GIGABYTE H55N-USB3 LGA1156 board on TechWareLabs.
GIGABYTE 890FXA-UD5 AMD 890FX on LegitReviews.
ASUS M4A89TD PRO/USB3 AM3 board on Tweaktown.

Cooling:
ARCTIC COOLING MX-4 Thermal Compound on MadShrimps.
Coolermaster NotePal U3 Laptop Cooler on Pro-Clockers.
CoolIt Vantage ALC on Overclockers.com.
Corsair A50 and A70 CPU coolers on OCClub.
Cooler Master NotePal U3 laptop cooler on OCClub.
Noctua NH-D14 CPU Cooler on FutureLooks.

Audio Visual:
Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS7 digicam on TechReviewSource.
Sapphire Mini Projector 101: A Battery-powered Cinema on InsideHW.
Asus Xense sound card on OC3D.

Storage:
GSKill Phoenix Pro: Little Drive, Lotta Performance on HotHardware.
Sharkoon Quickport Duo USB3.0 HDD Docking Station on FunkyKit.
LaCie XtremKey USB drive on DigitalTrends.
Lite-On iHBS112 12X Blu-ray Disc Writer on OCOnline.
Kingwin Dock Master USB 3.0 Hard Drive Dock on BigBruin.
Seagate GoFlex Home Network Storage System on TestFreaks.
Adata S596 Turbo 128GB SSD on FunkyKit.

Power Supply:
Cooler Master USNA 95 Slim Notebook Power Adapter on LegitReviews.
Enermax MODU87+ 900W on PCPerspective.
Enermax Revolution 85+ 920W on HWHeaven.

Video Cards:
Sapphire Radeon HD 5670 Ultimate 1GB on Tweaktown.
Palit GeForce GTX 460 1GB Sonic Platinum on PCPerspective.
Sapphire Radeon HD 5550 512MB GDDR5 OC on Tweaktown.

Cases:
NZXT Hades on BurnedIn.
Dimastech EasyHard V2.5 Test Bench on Metku.
Cooler Master HAF X full tower on Bjorn3D.

Portable & Prebuilt:
Zotac Zbox HD-ND22 barebones mini PC on TechReport.

Memory:
ADATA XPG Gaming V2 6GB DDR31-1600 on PureOC.
Mach Xtreme Armor 1600 MHz CL8 4GB Kit on TechPowerUp.



Misc Pics (24 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 27-August-2010  01:56:09 (GMT +10) - by Agg

A little earlier than usual - thanks to Peter and Steve this week:






And if you're after more, check out this Wiki page which lists ALL "misc pics" news posts from the archive.



OCAU 10th Anniversary Stubby Holders (6 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 26-August-2010  17:10:32 (GMT +10) - by Agg

We still have quite a few 10th anniversary stubby holders available - they're ready to ship now!


Click for ordering info! Beer not included :)


Right now you can get two of these shipped to you anywhere in Australia for twenty bucks total! Get some cool stuff and support OCAU, it's win-win. :)



Thursday Night Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 26-August-2010  12:06:21 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Cases:
Sentey Arvina GS-6400 Full Tower on OCIA.
SilverStone PS05B Mid Tower Black on OCOnline.

Audio Visual:
Canon IXUS 105 & PowerShot A3100 IS digicams on TBreak.
SteelSeries 7H USB Headset on HWHeaven.
Nox Audio Specialist Gaming Headset on LegitReviews.
Arctic Cooling Arctic Sound S111 headphones on AseLabs.
ViewSonic VP2655wb 25.5-inch LCD Monitor on Tweaktown.
Sony Alpha SLT-A55V digicam on DigitalTrends.

Memory:
Adata Supreme DDR2-800 2GB SODIMM on FunkyKit.
GeIL EVO TWO 4GB DDR3-1600 CL7 on PureOC.
Super Talent Extreme Performance DDR3 on TechWareLabs.
Super Talent Chrome Series PC3-16000 (2000MHz) 12GB Kit on Tweaktown.

Motherboard & CPU:
Asus X58 Rampage III Extreme LGA1366 board on HotHardware.
Gigabyte GA-890FXA-UD5 AM3 board on NinjaLane.
ASUS AT3IONT-I Deluxe (NVIDIA ION) on Tweaktown.

Input Etc:
CM Storm Inferno Gaming Mouse on HWHeaven.
WarMouse Meta on OCClub.
X-Arcade Solo Arcade Control Stick on FutureLooks.
Logitech G510 Keyboard on RBMods.
Logisys Wireless 800/1600 DPI Switchable Mouse on OCClub.

Video Cards:
Gainward GTX460 Golden Sample on OC3D.
HIS Radeon HD 5550 and HD 5570 GDDR5 on Tweaktown.

Portable & Prebuilt:
Puget Systems Serenity Custom Gaming PC on Tweaktown.
MSI GT660R laptop on TechReviewSource.
Gaming Desktop Round-Up: Puget vs. Maingear vs. Acer on TechSpot.

Cooling:
Cooler Master V6 GT CPU cooler on Guru3D.
Prolimatech Super Mega on LegionHW.
Aerocool F6XT Fan Controller on Pro-Clockers.
Xigmatek Aegir SD128264 CPU Cooler Heatsink on BenchmarkReviews.
DeepCool GamerStorm Processor Cooler on Tweaknews.

Storage:
QNAP TS-259 Pro Atom NAS on Bjorn3D.
Seagate GoFlex Home 1TB Network Storage System on Bigbruin.

Misc:
Enermax Revolution 85+ 1020W PSU on PureOC.
NZXT Premium Cables on ThinkComputers.



Win Stuff! (3 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 25-August-2010  15:30:16 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Here's three contests exclusively for OCAU readers!

Firstly, Lunarmorph are giving away a double pass to the 2010 "alternative fashion and synthesizer orchestra" show. To enter, answer this question: The iconic Dr Who theme was written by Ron Grainer, but the unsung hero who actually created the sonic masterpiece using nothing but cut up recording tape, found objects and laboratory test oscillators was the true genius of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop. Although this version was made purely by the 'musique concrete' composition method, all of the subsequent versions of Dr Who were made using synthesizers. Ironically the genius that brought the first rendition of the piece to life absolutely loathed synthesizers and is reported to have left the BBC not long after synthesizers became commercially available. What was the name of this electronic music pioneer? If you are a Facebook user please post your answer on the Under The Blue Moon Facebook page, or email your entry. Make sure you mention OCAU so you're in the draw for the OCAU-specific tickets!

Next, Pagnian Imports, who specialise in racing simulator goodies like the Virtual Racing Chassis by Bob Earl that I reviewed recently, are giving away a Porsche 911 Turbo Wheel for PC or PS3 to an OCAU member. They're launching their Next Level Racing range, so to enter this contest, they're offering a prize to the OCAU member who can best explain in 25 words or less, how you think the Next Level racing simulators can take racing to the next level as opposed to a controller. Post your answers on their Facebook page or email via their website. Mention OCAU to make sure you're in the OCAU-specific prize draw. The winner will be drawn at the end of September. Two runners-up get a pair of OCAU Stubby Coolers too. :)

Last but certainly not least, we have two pairs of M4 bookshelf speaker kits from the very nice people at The Loud Speaker Kit. I've been racking my brain to come up with a contest idea for this one, so here we go. I want to see a self-portrait of you enjoying your favourite music just a little too much. So cover yourself in posters, dress up like Eddie Van Halen or assemble a self-portrait out of guitar picks you got from concerts - I don't mind. Post your entries in the contest thread (use OCAU Pix if you need image hosting). In about a month I'll pick the best, or more likely run a poll and let the community decide, then give away a pair of speaker kits and two OCAU Stubby Coolers to the winner, a pair of speaker kits to the runner up, and a pair of OCAU Stubby Coolers to the second runner up.

Thanks to Under The Blue Moon, Pagnian Imports and The Loud Speaker Kit for these prizes!



Forum Projects (10 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 25-August-2010  11:26:25 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Some very cool things going on in the forums at the moment:


booj reviewed the
MSI GTX480

missingo95 checked out
the ASUS M4A89GTD PRO/USB3

hoopstar is scratch-building
an Atari Star Wars Cockpit game


gurner made a
Commander Keen helmet

Jimmy37 has a
scratch built "Tempest" PC

Neckabutu's "Situation Critical"
has a cool paint job


Pinky2112's "Project ShowCase"
is looking good

windwithme reviewed the
latest "Be Quiet!" 600W PSU

Jolly-Swagman has a review
of the CoolIT Vantage ALC cooler



Wednesday Night (6 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 25-August-2010  10:46:47 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Windows 95 turned 15 years old yesterday, thanks Timbot. In the marketplace, Windows 95 was a major success, and within a year or two of its release had become the most successful operating system ever produced. It also had the effect of driving other major players in the DOS-compatible operating system market out of business, something which would later be used in court against Microsoft.

Mpot spotted that Excom Education have shut down, so if you're expecting to do a course there soon.. think again. Excom staff have told iTnews they have been told the company would appoint external administrators at 4pm today and that their wages and entitlements would be paid in full. Also PlusCorp, who were involved with OCAU until 2007 and have changed hands several times, seem to have shut down now too.

Nik sent in this review of an alternative desktop. Some people visiting my GUI gallery may wonder where the desktop concept came from. Well before Windows, before the Macintosh, or even before the Xerox Alto, there was the Realworld(TM) Desk.

If you're a Joss Whedon fan (think Buffy, Firefly, etc), Anshalok sends word that he'll be in Sydney this weekend. Info here, here and here. Short notice so probably sold out. :/

BenchmarkReviews checked out Mafia II performance. Built on 2K Czech's proprietary Illusion game engine, Benchmark Reviews tests Mafia II using ATI Radeon and NVIDIA GeForce video cards. PhysX and GeForce 3D-Vision technologies are revealed, which shape and build this game into an immersive experience. Meanwhile, OCClub have a Lost Planet 2 performance preview.

Tarot spotted that big Thermalright case we linked a few days ago was at Computex in 2007. Don't fret, though, there are going to be drive bays and we're also assured that the final retail product will have wires running across the cooling array on the removable side-panel for mounting one huge fan or several 120mm units. Dunno if it ever came to light.

The EFF are so annoyed with Apple, they've had to come up with a new word. They've branded a new Apple patent as traitorware. According to Patent Vest, this Apple patent is aimed at identifying unauthorized users. Your iPhone might identify you through its camera or through its microphone, to verify if you are indeed the owner. It might user a biometric measurement, such as detecting the heartbeat to make sure it matches the authorized user's "heart signature." It could log keystrokes and GPS coordinates, and could even measure "vibration profiles," whatever that really means.



AMD's Bulldozer & Bobcat (1 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 25-August-2010  07:36:30 (GMT +10) - by Agg

AMD revealed more information on their Bulldozer & Bobcat platforms today, which will form the basis of their CPU products from 2011 onward. Bobcat is destined to be the bread and butter CPU for AMD in the low-power, net appliance market segment, however, AMD also needs to compete in the high performance desktop/ server market. The new design has the charismatic name Bulldozer, and like Bobcat, is built out of a limited number of design blocks. Bulldozer is not hyperthreaded in the same way as Bobcat, rather it is a completely new design based on dedicated and shared components on three hierarchical levels as in core, module and chip.

Coverage on LostCircuits, PC Perspective, Tech Report, HWSecrets and Anandtech (and here).

Discussion continues in this thread.



Wednesday Afternoon Reviews (2 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 25-August-2010  07:05:24 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Cases:
Lian Li PC-Q08 Mini ITX on OC3D.
Sentey Arvina GS-6400 Black on LegitReviews.
Lian Li PC-Q06 ITX Test Bench in Red on Pro-Clockers.
NZXT Phantom on NeoSeeker.
Sentey Arvina GS-6400R on BenchmarkReviews.

Storage:
A-DATA Nobility NH03 1TB USB 3.0 External HDD on Tweaktown.
Corsair Force Series F120 120GB Solid State Drive on ThinkComputers.

Video Cards:
Nvidia GeForce GTX 460 SLI Performance on TechSpot.
ATI Radeon HD 5550 512MB GDDR5 on Tweaktown.

Software:
BullGuard Internet Security 9.0 on TechReviewSource.
Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 on BusinessComputingWorld.
Mafia II game on Techgage.



Photography Gallery (1 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 24-August-2010  09:48:15 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Here's some recent photos from our Photography Gallery forum.















Tuesday Evening Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 24-August-2010  09:40:22 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Motherboard & CPU:
Gigabyte X58A-UD3R LGA1366 board on TBreak.
ECS H55H-M LGA 1156 mATX on PCPerspective.
ASRock 890GX Extreme4 AM3 board on HWSecrets.
ASUS M4A88TD-V EVO/USB3 AM3 board on OCIA.

Audio Visual:
brite-View CinemaTube Mini / CinemaGo 1080P Media Streamer and Player on TestFreaks.
Micca MPLAY-HD Digital Media Player on APHNetworks.
Samsung HZ35W / WB650 GPS Digital Camera on EverythingUSB.
AXIS M3204 IP Camera on TechWareLabs.

Cases:
NZXT Tempest EVO on Tweaknews.
Sharkoon Nightfall Mid-Tower on Tweaktown.
Thermaltake Armor A60 Mid Tower on Pro-Clockers.

Prebuilt & Portable:
Acer Aspire AZ5700-U2112 23-inch All-in-One Desktop Computer on Tweaktown.
Asus' bamboo-infused U33Jc 13-inch notebook on TechReport.
Dell Studio XPS 7100 Desktop on HWHeaven.

Input Etc:
Arctic Cooling K381 Keyboard on TechPowerUp.
Cooler Master CM Storm Inferno Gaming Mouse on ThinkComputers.
Razer Imperator gaming mouse on PureOC.

Misc:
HP PhotoSmart e-All-in-One D110a on TechReviewSource.
Arctic Cooling C1 Mobile Solar Charger on ASELabs.
Patriot Sector 5 DDR3-2400 4GB Memory Kit on Overclockers.com.
Canon PIXMA MG6120 Wireless All-In-One Printer on TestFreaks.
ASUS ENGTX460 TOP video card on OCClub.
MadMouse Glaciator Thermoelectric Chiller on PureOC.



Tuesday Afternoon (3 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 24-August-2010  06:42:57 (GMT +10) - by Agg

A non-profit group called Copenhagen Suborbitals are working towards being the first private organisation to put a human into space. More info here, thanks Steven. A group of engineers in Denmark are preparing to do just that - launch a home-built rocket, along with a human passenger, more than 100km into the sky. Dubbed HEAT1X, the rocket will be launched from a floating barge in the sea just outside the Danish border, 12 nautical miles from shore. And it will be towed out there by a submarine built by one of the men behind the rocket project. There's a SomethingAwful thread with lots of info along the way here.

AMD have deprecated 3DNow!. 3DNow! instructions are being deprecated and will not be supported in certain upcoming AMD processors. In those processors, the 3DNow! Instructions feature flag bit will not be set. This is indicated by EDX bit 31 of CPUID function 8000_0001h. This is a good time to remind developers just how important it is to check for features supported at runtime before using them.

Anandtech checked out the world's first 3TB HDD. It's in an external enclosure but to confirm no trickery they cracked it open. Inside the GoFlex Desk 3TB was a standard 3.5” Seagate Barracuda XT drive. There are rubber squares installed where the mounting screwholes are and the drive is in a metal tray, but other than that this is a run of the mill SATA HDD.

NeoSeeker compared some i7 CPU coolers. It's the battle of value oriented CPU coolers in our latest roundup, pitting the Evercool Transformer 4, Evercool Buffalo and Gelid Tranquillo against each other. While we test them in an Intel Core i7 environment, they actually support a variety of socket types. Their heatsink designs and fan setups are just as varied, but what do they really offer for consumers?

MadShrimps have some memory overclocking charts based on HWBot data. One of the perks of having a database like this is not only to amuse (and annoy) overclockers globally, but mainly to analyze the results afterwards and have a better understanding of how the overclocking game really works. Processor and video card charts are scattered around the website, but memory overclocking charts is something we have not touched before.

MWP and Sabz both spotted that the Nmap group have made an icons of the web composite image. A large-scale scan of the top million web sites (per Alexa traffic data) was performed in early 2010 using the Nmap Security Scanner and its scripting engine. We retrieved each site's icon by first parsing the HTML for a link tag and then falling back to /favicon.ico if that failed. 328,427 unique icons were collected, of which 288,945 were proper images. OCAU appears here in the image. Reminds me of the Avatar Mosaic that Yoink made for OCAU.



Tuesday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 23-August-2010  17:26:18 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Cooling:
Silenx Effizio EFZ-80HA2 Compact CPU Cooler on DragonSteelMods.
Thermaltake Massive23 LX Notebook Cooler on iGadgetLife.
Zalman ZM-NC2500Plus Notebook Cooler on FutureLooks.
Corsair Hydro Series H70 CPU Water Cooling Kit on LegitReviews.

Storage:
Thecus N7700Pro Network Attached Storage on OCOnline.
Array R2 Mini ITX NAS Case on MadShrimps.
Patriot Gauntlet PCGT25S Drive Enclosure on BenchMarkReviews.
OCZ RevoDrive 120GB PCI Express SSD on Techgage.
SilverStone HDDBoost on NinjaLane.
ADATA Nobility Series S805 USB Flash Drive on MadShrimps.

Video Cards:
Point of View GeForce GTX 460 768MB TGT Ultra Charged on Guru3D.
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460 On Linux on Phoronix.
GIGABYTE GeForce GTX 470 Super Overclock on Tweaktown.



PlayStation Controller Coffee Table (27 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 23-August-2010  01:30:17 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Phi sent in some info and photos of a very cool project by his neighbour, Mark M:



I made the Playstation controller coffee table for my year 12 major work, as an Industrial Technology project. I made the whole controller out of Plywood, MDF and Veneer on Veneer. I used the MDF for the R and L legs and the Veneer on Veneer for the 2 analogue joysticks as the 6mm Bendy Plywood wouldn’t bend around such a small diameter. To bend around the Handles I used 6mm Bendy Plywood. To give the finish of the playstation controller coffee table I used polyurethane full gloss finish. I used White gloss for the whole controller and the Black gloss for the Buttons.



The whole project took me 20 weeks on and off during school time, in and out of class. Besides the fact that I needed to build something for my major year 12 project, I wanted to build something different and unique, giving me the most marks possible. At this very time it is getting marked for my High school Certificate (Year 12). So once the results come in I’ll let you know how I go, I’m hoping to top the state. Hope you like it. :)



Monday Morning (21 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 22-August-2010  17:00:24 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Leeches can rejoice, as there's a battle of the giant allowances underway. Internet providers iiNet and Primus appear to be locked in a battle to offer the largest download limit on the market. iiNet yesterday announced it would be the first provider in Australia to offer a download limit of one terabyte (1TB), or one thousand gigabytes (GB).

I can't decide if this is a hoax or not, but here's a case with monster cooling from Thermalright. Hugely impractical and I can't see anything on their website, so at best it's a demonstrator for trade shows etc. Still, worth a look.

SilentPCReview tortured a few fanless PSUs. A roundup torture test of samples from every fanless power supply line in the marketplace instigated by the Seasonic X-400 Fanless, which cruised through 15 hours of full-load operation at nearly 60°C temperature in the "case". Which fanless PSUs can actually deliver rated power with virtually no forced airflow?

NASA are holding a contest to decide which songs to play to wake up the Astronauts on the final two Shuttle missions. The wakeup song has been a part of the space program since the days of the Apollo missions, and now NASA is giving you two chances to be a part of this history! We need your help selecting wakeup songs to be played during the final missions of the Space Shuttle Program!

A few people sent in the Taiwanese news animation version of our election leadup. Although polls show Abbott way ahead of Gillard, the Labor/Green party coalition still has more support when counted together. 'Crocodile Harry' has predicted a Labor victory. This is the closest election in Australia in 50 years.

There's a lot of chatter about the PS3 being hacked to allow games to be played without the disks. More here and here, although people are still waiting to fully verify if this is real.

If you're a fan of Kari Byron of MythBusters fame, you'll be happy to hear she is presenting a new show called "Head Rush". Premiering on Monday, the commercial-free "Head Rush" will air each weekday on the Science Channel and give Byron the chance to spin the magic that has made her so popular on "MythBusters" in the hopes of showing kids that science is exciting and worth a whole lot of their time.

GamePron report on antidepressants treating game addiction. Recent research from Korea has shown that a common anti-depressant, Bupropion (sold as Welbutrin, Zyban and Voxra) can “decrease craving for Internet game play” as well as the brain activity triggered by video game cues. This is a drug often used to help quit smoking, to lose weight or to recover from drug addiction, in addition to typical anti-depressant and anti-anxiety uses.

Here's an odd one from HyRax1: Some people have way too much time on their hands to discover this stuff, but what a result! Justin Bieber slowed down 800%, Portal Song slowed down 800%. This may be the only way I could actually ENJOY a single Justin Bieber track (all 30 minutes of it), but the Portal Song still sounds way better. :) Both songs were slowed down using PaulStretch, an open source sound-stretching tool.



Press Releases (0 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 22-August-2010  16:18:28 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Huntkey sent info about Gigabyte's upcoming Futuremark OC contest, where their PSUs are being used as prizes. The competition entry period is Aug 16 through Sep 12, 2010. There are two segment competition based on overall 3D Mark Vantage and Single GPU 3D Mark Vantage score. Awards provided for TOP 5 winners of the two segments from such famous PC area leading brand as GIGABYTE, ATI, ENERMAX, Aero Cool, GEIL and Huntkey. As the unique authorized power supply sponsor for such an overclocking banquet, Huntkey will unveil X7 1200W power supply worldwide. More info in a 1.7MB DOC file here.

SanDisk have a new tiny SSD. up to 64GB and smaller than a postage stamp. he SanDisk iSSD drive is the first flash SSD device to support the industry standard SATA interface in a small BGA (Ball Grid Array) package that can be soldered onto any motherboard, and that is fast enough for use with advanced operating systems in next-generation mobile computing platforms.

BitFenix have unveiled their Colossus gaming chassis. Colossus represents the first product released by BitFenix and serves as their flagship PC chassis. This E-ATX full tower case brings PC chassis design to a new level, combining an aggressive futuristic design with clean modern lines.

Sapphire have a new video card that simplifies ATI Eyefinity. SAPPHIRE Technology introduces the SAPPHIRE HD 5770 FleX, the latest graphics card in the highly successful SAPPHIRE HD 5000 series. This is the first graphics solution to support three screens in ATI Eyefinity mode, out of the box, without the need for DisplayPort monitors or active adapters. The SAPPHIRE HD 5770 FleX can also support four monitors in ATI Eyefinity mode with a single card.

Kingston have new watercooled HyperX memory. Kingston Technology Company, Inc., the independent world leader in memory products, today announced the release of HyperX 'H2O' water-cooled DDR3 dual- and triple-channel memory kits. With frequencies up to 2133 MHz and capacities up to 6GB, H2O is the newest addition to the HyperX product family and supports the needs of enthusiasts building with water-cooled systems.

Gallery Serpentine sent word that the Under The Blue Moon festival is on again soon in Enmore, Sydney. Of particular interest to geeks is the Lunarmorph Show, which combines an alternative fashion show with a demonstration of some rare and exotic synthesizers. For electronic music fans there will be the opportunity to see and hear some of the most rare and exotic synthesizers from the 70's & 80's played live. Some of these machines are rarely seen outside private collections such as the PPG Wave & the mighty Yamaha CS80 (which is the sound of Vangelis). There's also a steampunk exhibition. Steam punk inventor Sir Dij Dijor & Gentlemen Adventurer, Stewart Rule host this afternoon of strange contraptions from an alternative time stream – expect time machines, Tesla coils, steam punk sellers of ray guns and special guests to entertain you with steam punk burlesque and vaudeville. Sounds fun. :)



Sunday Afternoon Reviews (1 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 22-August-2010  04:05:06 (GMT +10) - by Agg

I barely understand politics at the best of times.. and now I'm even more confused than normal. :)

Cases:
BitFenix Colossus on OC3D.
In Win Dragon Slayer on OCClub.

Audio Visual:
Phiaton PS 210i Earphones on TestFreaks.
LG HS201 compact LED projector on InsideHW.
Asus CineVibe Headset on OCIA.
Arctic Sound S111 2.0 Speakers on Tweaktown.
Samsung UN55C7000 55-inch 3D LCD HDTV on PCStats.
Canon PowerShot SD4000 IS on TechReviewSource.

Motherboard & CPU:
Intel Core i5-760 and ECS P55H-AK on HWHeaven.
Intel i5 760 CPU on OC3D.
Jetway JNC98-525E-LF Atom Motherboard on TechWareLabs.

Storage:
OCZ 60GB Agility 2 SATA II SSD on CCEReviews.
Kingston SSDNow V (Gen 2) 30 GB Solid State Drive on TechARP.
Sunbeamtech USB 3.0 Docking Station on OCWorkbench.
Vantec NexStar CB-SATAU3 SATA to USB 3.0 Adapter on Tweaktown.

Video Cards:
Sapphire Radeon HD 5770 FleX 1GB on Tweaktown.
SPARKLE GeForce GTX 460 768MB on PureOC.
GIGABYTE Radeon HD 5770 Super Overclock 1GB on Tweaktown.

Cooling:
Akasa Venom Heatsink on Frostytech.
Noctua NH-C12P SE14 CPU Cooler on FunkyKit.
CoolIT C240 ALC ECO CPU cooler on Guru3D.

Portable & Prebuilt:
ASRock Core 100HT NetTop on Phoronix.
Lenovo ThinkCenter M90z All-In-One on HotHardware.
IBUYPOWER Paladin XLC Phantom Series System on LegitReviews.

Power Supply:
Seasonic X-400 Fanless Power Supply on HWSecrets.
Seasonic X Series 400W Fanless Power Supply on PCPerspective.
Corsair AX850 Power Supply on HWHeaven.
Choiix Power Fort Rechargeable Power Backup Battery Pack on FutureLooks.
Scythe Chouriki 2 750W on Pro-Clockers.

Misc:
Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 3 - A Photographer's Review on Techgage.
Rosewill RK-800G Gaming Keyboard on OCModShop.



Election 2010 (0 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 21-August-2010  08:39:15 (GMT +10) - by Agg

I'm sure you're already saturated with election info, but if you do want some online stuff the live tally is here, with streaming coverage on ABC and Sky.

Discussion here.



Misc Pics (26 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 20-August-2010  04:49:20 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Another week has gone whizzing by..






And if you're after more, check out this Wiki page which lists ALL "misc pics" news posts from the archive.



Friday Morning (5 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 19-August-2010  15:22:40 (GMT +10) - by Agg

I had no idea this was on the cards, but apparently the last US combat brigade has left Iraq. Some 50,000 US troops will remain until the end of 2011 to advise Iraqi forces and protect US interests. A further 6,000 support troops will be in Iraq until the end of the month, when US combat operations will end.

Scrantic spotted this peek inside the ABC's MediaHub. MediaHub is one of the only facilities of its type in Australia and the rest of the world, broadcasting digital television across different parts of Australia. The facility is responsible for services like ABC's 24-hour news channel and the children's channel ABC3.

Intel have acquired McAfee for $7.68B. It’s a huge deal for Intel, primarily a hardware company, to acquire a security-oriented software company, especially one as big as McAfee. However, Intel believes that security has become an integral part of computing, which makes it their business, too. More info here, thanks dasuperham.

The OpenSolaris distro is apparently dead, thanks Jason. Although the OpenSolaris project never really had the potential to deliver a practical mainstream desktop platform, it arguably succeeded in producing a compelling workstation environment for developers and system administrators. Due to the ease with which it could be installed, it significantly lowered the barrier to entry for technology enthusiasts who wanted to try out unique Solaris capabilities such as ZFS and DTrace. Discussion here.

Here's an interesting one: Hungarian ISPs are required to advertise the lowest speed of an internet service, not just a theoretical maximum. For instance, Deutsche Telekom's Hungarian subsidiary T-Home sells its products by both maximum and minimum line speeds—and those minimums vary by technology. The 5Mbps package guarantees a mere 500Kbps when ordered on a cable line, while the same package guarantees a 2.5Mbps minimum on fiber. Sounds familiar, my 8Mb/s ADSL is hobbled by a 300KB/s-per-connection cap on my exchange. :(

Timbot sent word that things seem to be not going well for BFG. PC Perspective look at their card that never was. It became readily apparent after the Fermi launch that BFG did not actually have any Fermi cards (though they were listed on the site), and they had announced in May that they were exiting the graphics business.

Rob noticed that two major Microsoft games franchises are returning: Age of Empires and their Flight Simulator product. Of course, the "Simulator" bit has been removed, so now it's just Flight. Let's take a look at the trailers, and discuss what little we know about these games. Trailers: Flight and Age of Empires.

There's a new DX11 / OpenGL4 benchmark, TessMark, thanks Sniper. Developed by JeGX (FurMark, GPU Caps Viewer, GPU-Shark), TessMark is a compact tool with two synthetic tests showing off tessellation that can run either in a benchmark or a stability mode. You can choose the resolution of the test and the level of tessellation, plus the AA setting, which should ensure hours of fun for enthusiasts.



Thursday Night (9 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 19-August-2010  12:16:37 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Stephen Conroy has been interviewed on JJJ's Hack programme. Broadband policy has emerged as one of the big differences between the two major parties this election campaign. Tzortst spotted a more recent interview here on ARN.

XbitLabs checked out some mainstream cases. Today we will introduce to you four new models, one from each of the following manufacturers: Cooler Master, Foxconn, GMC and Zalman. They also have an AMD 890GX AM3 motherboard roundup. The collective image of an AMD 890GX-based motherboard is quite attractive. It's a mid-end feature-rich full-size ATX model with two graphics slots, SATA 6Gbps support and an optional but nevertheless provided USB 3.0 controller.

A decidedly non-mainstream case is this impressive PC mod over on Biertijd. No real info but lots of photos.

GamePron report on staff cuts at an Australian games studio. It is a sad day for the Australian games industry, with stories filtering through that Krome Studios have closed down their Adelaide office and their Melbourne and Brisbane studios have been heavily cut.

LegitReviews have some Lost Planet 2 benchmarking using a Radeon HD 5850 vs GeForce GTX 460 1GB. LegionHW have a GPU Performance Preview in the same game. Being a DX11 title that makes good use of tessellation, Nvidia were very keen to get onboard and promote the game, and already there is a stand-alone benchmark available.

Funkykit compared 15 power supplies. What you really need, is professional equipment that can test a range of scenarios and record maximum load, average load, maximum Amps and various voltage readings. Becasue of this, power supply testing equipment, such as ones from Chroma, can be hugely expensive ... And this is the whole reason why our Funky Kit team was invited, to visit the testing labs at Coolermaster's office. Hrm.

Jimmy sent in two interesting things, a map of internet backbones and a satellite tracker from NASA. We hope you enjoy J-Track 3-D. It should appear in its own window and begin loading a database of over 900 satellites.



Thursday Evening Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 19-August-2010  10:02:18 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Portable & Prebuilt:
ASRock Core 100HT-BD (Core i3) HTPC on HWHeaven.
Samsung's R480 14-inch notebook on TechReport.
HP Pavilion dm4 Notebook on TBreak.

Cooling:
Glacialtech Igloo 5751 PWM Heatsink on Frostytech.
NZXT Sentry LXE Fan Controller on RBMods.

Video Cards:
The Exclusive First Look at the BFG Tech Radeon Graphics Card on PCPerspective.
Gigabyte GeForce GTX 470 SOC (Super Overclock) on Guru3D.
MSI N465GTX Twin Frozr II on OC3D.

Motherboards:
Gigabyte H55N-USB3 mini-ITX LGA1156 board on Techgage.
Intel DH57JG LGA1156 mini-ITX on XbitLabs.

Audio Visual:
A Quick Look at the Self-Installing HP LaserJet P1606dn on TechSpot.
Eagle Arion ET-AR508LR-BK 2.1 Soundstage Speakers on CCEReviews.
Nvidia Nvision Surround on Bjorn3D.
JVC Picsio Pocket HD Camcorder / Camera on ThinkComputers.

Cases:
Antec DF-85 Dark Fleet Series ATX Enclosure on FutureLooks.
Thermaltake Armor A90 on TechWareLabs.
Antec Dark Fleet DF-85 Full Tower on Tweaktown.
Antec Dark Fleet DF-85 Enthusiast Gaming Case on HWLogic.
NZXT Hades on XSReviews.
Norco RPC-4020 4U on OCClub.

Memory:
G.Skill Flare Series PC3-16000 (2000MHz) 4GB Kit on Tweaktown.
Patriot Memory Viper II Sector 7 1800MHz 6GB DDR3 Kit on BigBruin.
Mushkin Ridgeback 4GB DDR31-600 CL6 on PureOC.

Misc:
iMicro PS-IM400WH Power Supply on HWSecrets.
Lenovo Mini Wireless Keyboard N5901 on Tweaktown.
Seagate Momentus XT: Hybrid Drive in Action on XbitLabs.



Interesting Forum Threads (2 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 18-August-2010  10:08:17 (GMT +10) - by Agg

A quick snapshot of what people are up to in the forums:

It's about time! Offset tower heatsink in Overclocking & Hardware.
EVGA introduces the Classified SR-2 1200W Power Supply in Overclocking & Hardware.
New Wireless G930 Headset, G700 Mouse & Wired G510 Keyboard in Overclocking & Hardware.
Corsair Hydro H70 Cooling System - H50 Replacement in Overclocking & Hardware.
New Intel Core i7 990X Extreme coming in September? in Intel Hardware.
Upcoming Sandy Bridge launch lineup? in Intel Hardware.
iPhone 4 owners -- any reception issues? in Apple Hardware & Software.
Free Game: Mega Jump for iPhone and iPod Touch in Apple Hardware & Software.
Intel 25nm SSD Roadmap Leaked; 600GB, 400GB and 300GB Coming in Storage & Backup.
iiNet Releasing 1TB Bundled Data Plans From August 20th in Networking, Telephony & Internet.
AusNOG-04 in Networking, Telephony & Internet.
Kernel Mode Flaw: Affects all Windows Versions in Windows Operating Systems.
Warning about fake W7 versions on eBay in Windows Operating Systems.
RIP OpenSolaris? in Other Operating Systems.
Current best beginner's distro in Other Operating Systems.
Free Automated Backup Solutions - Whats your best pick in General Software.
Call of Duty: Black Ops | Xbox 360 Discussion in Microsoft Consoles.
What do you do to get into the zone? in Graphics & Programming.
Mafia 2: Demo August 10th in Games.
World of Tanks - Free to play! in Games.
New generation Microsoft Flight Sim!! in Games.
iPhone 4 vs Android in Mobile Phones.
Which country's stock market has been the best performer? in Career, Education & Finance.
40 billionaires pledge wealth to charity in Career, Education & Finance.



Wednesday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 18-August-2010  07:15:45 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Motherboards:
GIGABYTE 880GMA-UD2H AMD 880G AM3 board on LegitReviews.
Jetway MA3-880GP AM3 board on Pro-Clockers.
ASUS AT3IONT-I Deluxe Atom 330/nVidia ION on ThinkComputers.
ASUS AT3IONT-I Deluxe on OCClub.
ASRock X58 Extreme3 LGA1366 board on PureOC.

Video Cards:
PowerColor Radeon 5850 PCS+ on HWHeaven.
Powercolor Radeon HD 5770 PCS+ Vortex on OC3D.
Zotac GeForce GTX 460 AMP! on HWHeaven.
ZOTAC GeForce GTX 460 Amp! Edition on TechPowerUp.
Zotac GTX 480 Amp Edition on HotHardware.

Storage:
Silicon Power Armor A80 USB 3.0 640GB Portable HDD on Tweaktown.
LaCie Rikiki external HDD on TechReviewSource.

Cooling:
Spire Coolers PacificBreeze II - SP302AP-B laptop cooler on ComputingOnDemand.
Akasa Venom Nano Heatsink on FrostyTech.

Input Etc:
Rosewill Super Slim Wireless-Touchpad Keyboard on OCClub.
Cooler Master Storm Inferno Gaming Mouse on Modders-Inc.
Cooler Master Storm Inferno Laser Mouse on APHNetworks.
X-Gaming X-Arcade Solo arcade joystick on NeoSeeker.

Power Supply:
PC Power & Cooling Silencer MkII 750W PSU on OCIA.
NZXT HALE90-850-M PSU on HWSecrets.



OCAU Official NBN Poll (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 17-August-2010  16:41:07 (GMT +10) - by Agg

It might be interesting to get a snapshot of what OCAU's community thinks of the proposed National Broadband Network. So, head over to this thread and let us know if you support the idea or not. For more background on the NBN, see the Wiki page here.


Tuesday Evening (5 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 17-August-2010  10:09:27 (GMT +10) - by Agg

The Government seems to have suddenly realised that phone-downloaded games and apps are not being examined as part of the national classification scheme. A spokeswoman for Minister of Home Affairs Brendan O'Connor said he was "concerned about the classification of games playable on mobile telephones and had put the wheels in motion to address this with his state and territory counterparts". Urgh, this won't be good for the world of cheap/free apps if they have to pay big bucks to be certified for use in Australia. Discussion here.

Malcolm Turnbull has written a lengthy piece on why he feels the NBN will fail, thanks Tristan. All Australians understand that high-quality, reliable and affordable broadband is a critical part of the infrastructure our nation needs to prosper in coming years. As one of the founders of OzEmail, Australia’s first big internet company, I believe passionately in broadband and the power of the internet.

Rage spotted this cool PC table. If you're looking for a long workspace free of cord clutter, this lengthy desk sports hidden cable management tools so nary a cable will be see dangling down to your floor. More here.

mpot sent in this iPod to iPhone converter. Kinda surprised nobody thought of this before, now. Invented by a 22-year-old programmer who lives in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen, the gadget is comprised of a case that fits around the outside of Apple's iPod Touch, a popular media player and Wi-Fi-enabled pocket computer with e-mail, maps and other applications.

Toshiba has a quite neat dual-screen mini-laptop, thanks Sniper. (USD) $1,099.99 buys you a Pentium U5400 processor, Windows 7 Home Premium (32-bit), integrated Intel HD graphics, a memory card reader, 2GB of DDR3 memory, a 62GB solid state drive, 802.11b/g/n WiFi, Bluetooth 2.1+EDR, an inbuilt webcam and an 8-cell battery. Oh, and twin 7-inch WSVGA LCD panels.

More Quakecon coverage: Day 2 and a hardware workshop on PC Perspective, and Best Case Mods on LegitReviews. The 2nd Annual PC Perspective Hardware Workshop at this year's Quakecon was a huge success as we gave out more than $30,000 in hardware. Our friends at ASUS hooked attendees up an indepth look at overclocking with ASUS's high-end Rampage and Maximus series of motherboards.

Apparently there's a fake Facebook "dislike" button scam doing the rounds. Hackers are enticing Facebook users to install an application pitched as a "Dislike" button that jokingly notifies contacts at the social networking service "now I can dislike all of your dumb posts." Once granted permission to access a Facebook user's profile, the application pumps out spam from the account and spreads itself by inviting the person's friends to get the button, according to Sophos.



Tuesday Evening Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 17-August-2010  09:20:03 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Software:
Microsoft Office Web Apps on BusinessComputingWorld.
Lost Planet 2: DX9 vs. DX11 on Techgage.

Video Cards:
Gigabyte HD 5670 1GB on TBreak.
XFX Radeon HD 5830 XXX Edition on HWHeaven.
Gainward GeForce GTX 460 1GB Goes Like Hell (GLH) Edition in SLI Overclocked on Tweaktown.

Cases:
NZXT Phantom Enthusiast Steel Full Tower on ThinkComputers.
Lian Li PC-Q06 Testbench on Bjorn3D.
3R System Odyssey L-1000 on HWSecrets.
nMedia HTPC 1080p Media Center Chassis on BenchmarkReviews.

Portable & Prebuilt:
ASUS G73JH-A1 17.3-Inch Gaming Notebook on Tweaktown.
AViiQ Portable Laptop Stand on ThinkComputers.
BodhiBox HD2 Home Theater PC on OCIA.

Motherboard & CPU:
Zotac H55-ITX-C-E: Stacked LGA1156 Mini-ITX on SilentPCReview.
Biostar TA870+ AM3 board on InsideHW.
ECS P55H-AK LGA1156 board on Guru3D.
MSI Big Bang XPower LGA1366 board on HotHardware.
Asus P6X58D-E LGA1366 board on NeoSeeker.

Cooling:
Zalman ZM-NC1500 Mini Notebook Cooler on MegaTechNews.
CoolIT Vantage Advanced Liquid Cooler on OCClub.
CoolIT Vantage A.L.C. on PureOC.
Thermaltake Frio CPU Cooler on Tweaktown.
Corsair A70 Dual 120mm Fan CPU Cooler on LegitReviews.
Cooler Master Vortex Plus CPU Cooler on OCOnline.
Silenx Effizio Extreme CPU cooler on OCClub.

Misc:
TRENDnet Powerline Adapter Kit TPL-303E2K on BenchmarkReviews.
Patriot Sector 7 6GB DDR3-1800 on PureOC.
Sparkle Gold Series 1250W Power Supply on PureOC.
Steelseries Xai Gaming Laser Mouse on FunkyKit.
Lian Li USB 3.0 3.5 Inch External Enclosure EX-103 on TestFreaks.



OCAU 10th Anniversary Stubby Holders (6 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 17-August-2010  06:38:23 (GMT +10) - by Agg

We still have quite a few 10th anniversary stubby holders available - they're ready to ship now!


Click for ordering info! Beer not included :)


Right now you can get two of these shipped to you anywhere in Australia for twenty bucks total! Get some cool stuff and support OCAU, it's win-win. :)



Monday Morning (21 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 15-August-2010  16:32:55 (GMT +10) - by Agg

The Gigabyte Open Overclocking Championship landed in Los Angeles recently, with coverage on Futurelooks and Techgage. Also QuakeCon was on this weekend, with coverage from PC Perspective and Tweaktown (and more here.) Id took the unusual step of demonstrating the title simultaneously on a PlayStation3, XBOX 360 and a PC to show the developer was quite serious about RAGE being a cross-platform title. Massive cheers erupted from the audience when the PC loaded the level in a fraction of the time it took the consoles to do so.

If you're a major Modern Warfare 2 fan, you might want to fork out the big bucks for the Prestige Edition of Black Ops, which includes a remote control spy car. Aside from getting a beastly box, the game itself and some sort of medal, the package also includes a fully functional RC spy car, complete with a camera that sends back video and audio to the owner's LCD-equipped controller.

A Japanese man has been arrested for creating an octopus virus. The virus gets its name because infected files are replaced by manga images of a squid, octopus or sea urchin. If the virus is left unchecked, all files in the computer's hard disk become infected. When a user tries to open a file, all the individual can access is a manga image of a marine invertebrate.

Freefrag pointed out this alternative to Google Maps which seems to have higher resolution images but also a cool time-line feature where you can look at photos of the same area taken at different times. See here for example.

If I'm reading this right, the surprise huge wireless bills that people have been refusing to pay, have cost Telstra up to $90 million in revenue. Telstra chief financial office, John Stanhope, said the costs – between $70 and $90 million of the company’s total $364 million bad debts charge for the year – had been “self inflicted” on Telstra’s behalf.

Google have posted a statement clarifying their net neutrality position with Verizon. Our two companies are proposing a legislative framework to the Congress for its consideration. We hope all stakeholders will weigh in and help shape the framework to move us all forward. We’re not so presumptuous to think that any two businesses could – or should – decide the future of this issue. We’re simply trying to offer a proposal to help resolve a debate which has largely stagnated after five years.

A few people sent in this AMD video. A humorous look at the risks of using anything but an ATI Radeon graphics card for gaming. A short film presented by AMD.



Sunday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Saturday, 14-August-2010  17:05:31 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Motherboard & CPU:
AMD Phenom 2 X6 1090T CPU on RBMods.
Intel i7 970 CPU on OC3D.

Input Etc:
Smartfish ErgoMotion Mouse on OCIA.
Cooler Master Storm Inferno mouse on Guru3D.

Portable & Prebuilt:
Video Perspective: VIA ARTiGO A1100 Pico-ITX Builder Kit on PCPerspective.
Shuttle XPC SH55J2 Barebone PC on MadShrimps.
Asus 14" U43F Bamboo Core i5 Notebook on HotHardware.
Gateway SX 2311-03 Small Form Factor PC on TechSpot.

Memory:
Kingston HyperX Blu 4GB Kit 1600MHz on Bjorn3D.
A-DATA Plus Series PC3-15000 (1866MHz) 6GB Kit on Tweaktown.

Storage:
Kingston SSDNow V+ Drive 128GB SSD on TestFreaks.
Super Talent SuperCrypt Secure USB 3.0 Flash Drive on EverythingUSB.
G.Skill Phoenix Pro 120GB SSD on PureOC.

Audio Visual:
Diamond MP1000 Media Wonder Full 1080P HD Player on LegitReviews.
Abbee Commercial-Free FM Radio on HWSecrets.
Sony BDP-N460 Blu-Ray player on DigitalTrends.
ASUS Cine5 5-Channel PC Speaker on BigBruin.
Seagate FreeAgent GoFlex TV on TechReviewSource.
ATEN VM0404H HDMI Matrix Switch on CCEReviews.

Cases:
SilverStone Sugo SG-04-FH on BurnedIn.
NZXT Phantom Full-Tower Case PHAN-001BK on BenchmarkReviews.

Power Supply:
Nexus RX-1.1K 1100 Watt Gold Modular on Tweaktown.
Seasonic X-Series Fanless 400W on HWHeaven.
Seasonic X-400 Fanless on SilentPCReview.

Software:
World of Tanks (PC) Preview on GamingHeaven.
Mafia II Performance on OCClub.
2K Games' Mafia II Demo Performance w/ a GeForce GTX 460 on LegitReviews.
StarCraft II Performance Index on TBreak.

Misc:
Sapphire Radeon HD 5770 Flex video cards on NinjaLane.
Titan Fenrir EVO CPU cooler on NeoSeeker.



Misc Pics (22 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 13-August-2010  04:36:21 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Ok. Bored with winter. Bring back the warmth, kthx.






And if you're after more, check out this Wiki page which lists ALL "misc pics" news posts from the archive.



Friday The 13th Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 12-August-2010  16:09:11 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Ooh.. spooky.

Motherboard & CPU:
ASUS M4A88TD-V EVO/USB3 AM3 board on Guru3D.
ECS P55H-AK LGA1156 board on HWSecrets.
ASRock X58 Extreme3 LGA1366 board on MadShrimps.
Intel Core i7-970 Processor Review, Lower Cost 6-Core on HotHardware.

Cooling:
Thermalright Silver Arrow CPU cooler on OCClub.
Antec Notebook Cooler Designer on Tweaktown.
XSPC Rasa Waterblock on XSReviews.
Thermalright HR-02 CPU cooler on OCClub.

Audio Visual:
ASUS O!Play Air Media Player on Techgage.
Seagate FreeAgent GoFlex TV HD Media Player on TestFreaks.
Olympus PEN E-PL1 digicam on TechReviewSource.
Patriot Box Office Media Player on TechSpot.
Western Digital WD TV Live Plus on TechReviewSource.

Video Cards:
Visiontek Radeon HD 4670 x2 on NeoSeeker.
MSI N460GTX Cyclone 1GD5/OC on BenchmarkReviews.
Gigabyte GV-N460OC-1GI on LegionHW.
HIS Radeon HD 5770 IceQ5 (1Gb GDDR5) on FunkyKit.
Palit GeForce GTX 460 Sonic Platinum 1GB on TechPowerUp.
Sapphire Radeon 5770 FleX Edition on HWHeaven.
ASUS EAH5870 V2 STALKER Edition on OCIA.
Sapphire HD 5770 FLEX on NeoSeeker.
Sapphire Radeon 5770 FleX on PureOC.
Sapphire HD 5770 FleX on OCClub.
Gainward GeForce GTX 460 1GB Goes Like Hell (GLH) Edition in SLI on Tweaktown.

Storage:
Icy Dock MB668 External ScrewLess 2.5Inch HDD Enclosure on MadShrimps.
Samsung 2TB EcoGreen F3 Hard Drive on SilentPCReview.
OCZ RevoDrive Review: SSD RAID + PCI-Express on HotHardware.
INDYLAB Touch USB 2.0 500GB Touch Sensitive Portable HDD on Tweaktown.
OCZ Agility 2 (E) 60 GB Solid State Drive on TechARP.
Super Talent USB 3.0 SuperCrypt Drive on TechWareLabs.

Portable & Prebuilt:
HP ProBook 6540b laptop on InsideHW.
HP All-in-One 200-5020 Desktop Computer on Tweaktown.

Input Etc:
Alienware TactX Keyboard and Mouse on Tweaktown.
Skydigital nKeyboard on XSReviews.

Misc:
Intuit QuickBooks 2010 Premier software on BusinessComputing.
Cooler Master HAF X case on HWHeaven.
Cooler Master Choiix Power Fort Advanced portable power source in ASELabs.



Thursday Night (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 12-August-2010  12:43:37 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Wired have an article about Google's net neutrality stance which appears to have changed recently. The whole approach just seemed so at odds with Google's past fiery statements on the issue. Maybe we misread the search engine giant's previous statements, we worried. Until this month, wasn't Google one of net neutrality's biggest advocates? So this morning we re-read three Google documents again—filings with the FCC going back to 2007, shortly after Google's Eric Schmidt first asked the public to "take action to protect Internet freedom." Facebook meanwhile don't agree with Google.

The founder of 4chan recently gave a bizarre testimony in the Sarah Palin email hacking trial. Moot was called in to testify about 4Chan and the data he turned over to investigators. But, for some reason, both the prosecution and defense felt the need to question him about 4Chan slang. Nothing in the rest of the testimony makes it clear why these questions needed to be asked, but they're a lot of fun.

This also looks like a lot of fun - a three-seater Ferrari F1 car. The Prancing Horse's three-seater Formula 1 demonstrator, called the Marlboro Red Rush, was doing laps in the rain at Fiorano with either testing dummies or two tiny passengers.

Archibaw sent in this article which reckons desktop PCs are at risk from overclocking. No, it's not the act of overclocking itself that threatens the survival of desktop computers as a platform; it's the overclocking market that's killing the industry. Manufacturer's have turned a hobby into a product, and then turned that product into their flagship model. Hrm, he makes an interesting point that overclocking used to be about making cheap things go fast, and now it's associated with the high end and premium-priced options.

You might want to practise typing with your toes - you never know when it might come in handy. Windom told police that the intruder “took her around the house and went through her belongings, then bound her to the bed,” Hobbs said. “Her laptop was on her bed with her and she was able to use her toes to type a message to her boyfriend and let him know what had happened.”

Tonight's timewaster is a simple beer pouring game. But rage also spotted that the classic Death Rally has been freeware for a while now. The basic idea behind Death Rally: win races, gather more money, buy upgrades to your vehicle. In between wreck your opponents, shoot your way through bystanders and keep the pedal to the metal!



Thursday Afternoon (3 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 12-August-2010  07:14:28 (GMT +10) - by Agg

The National Broadband Network will apparently be 10 times quicker than previously advised. Communications Minister Stephen Conroy confirmed today that the National Broadband Network NBN would reach speeds of up 1Gbps, ten times faster than the originally announced speeds of up to 100Mbps. Conroy said he had only found out about the 1GB speeds yesterday when NBN Co chief executive Mike Quigley called him last night. Discussion here.

Mittoni have a video with their take on Old Spice Guy, starring our old friend John Gatt. You can make up your own mind which is cooler. :)

It must be about time for the semi-annual Duke Nukem Forever is being revived rumour. The studio responsible for Brothers In Arms, Borderlands and Aliens: Colonial Marines is said to have picked up Duke Nukem Forever development where former studio 3D Realms left off, perhaps Duke's best bet for eventual completion.

Tech Report go multi-GPU DX11 crazy. We've tested 23 different single- and multi-GPU configs to answer the question: are two mid-range cards better than a single expensive one?

Sniper spotted some new HDD technology from Seagate. If the 3.5” HDD form factor survives, then we should see PMR to top out at about 5-6 TB per drive. With roughly 50x the potential of PMR, HAMR should lead the way beyond 100 TB drives and possibly into the region of 200 – 300 TB in the 2020 to 2025 time frame.

Dating site OkCupid have crunched the numbers on their database of photos and discovered some interesting and somewhat tongue-in-cheek trends about which camera to use and other ways to appear more inviting. In conclusion, the data strongly suggest that if you're single, you (or someone you know) should learn a little bit about photography. Technique can make or break your photograph, and the right decisions can get you more dates.



Forum Projects (1 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 11-August-2010  05:28:10 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Some interesting things from the forums:


Uncle-Fester has been
playing with LN2 and 3x SLI

ojk007 is building an
internet brodcast studio

metamorphosis has some
assorted disk benchmarks


windwithme reviewed the
Lenovo ThinkPad X201i

tzortst checked out the
iPhone 4 Bestskinsever Full Body

while Hurley restored a
Crusecraft Rambler 550 boat!


cylld83 retrofitted
soft-close to drawers

INerTIal is making
copper headlight housings

and n2p4u walks us through
a budget box build



Wednesday Afternoon (2 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 11-August-2010  04:25:15 (GMT +10) - by Agg

US Senator Ted Stevens has died in a plane crash. He'll be particularly remembered by the internet generation for his comments describing the internet as a series of tubes, and not a big truck. As Stevens' death was confirmed, Alaskan and national political figures from all sides of the political spectrum spoke highly of the man many Alaskans knew as "Uncle Ted."

Bit-Tech have an interview with VIA. In some respects, it's the company that could have had it all, moving away from chipsets in the mid 2000s, VIA gained experience with small, low power computer hardware thanks to its EPIA mini-ITX boards and Nano CPUs. Indeed, it remains the only company with a licence for designing and produce both x86 and ARM CPUs. Yet VIA remains a name dimly remembered in Europe and the US - if it's even remembered at all - we wrote a grand total of three news stories about them in 2009, and just one in 2010. Where did it all go wrong? Or did it go wrong? Discussion here.

XbitLabs consider Phenom II X6 memory. How greatly do DDR3 frequency and timings affect the performance of contemporary Socket AM3 systems and what will happen if we pair Phenom II X6 processor in an AMD 890 FX based mainboard with DDR3-2000 SDRAM?

The Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics sounds like something from X-Men, and they have been using a giant robotic arm to control an F1 simulator. Players (or subjects, the researchers prefer to call them) sit in a cabin on a robot arm some 2 meters off the ground and drive a Ferrari F2007 car around a projected track with force-feedback steering wheel and pedals. The aim is to make the experience as realistic as possible without having to buy a real F2007, and to test the simulator with an environment that requires sudden, massive acceleration.

Techgage checked out PhysX in Mafia II, while XbitLabs benchmarked current video cards in StarCraft II. While only time will tell whether the novelty will be as popular as the predecessor, the game has already captured minds of almost all gamers in the world. With the release of StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty, a question of possible hardware upgrade arises, and we are going to help you to come up with an answer.

JD sent in this article about the internet generation preferring real life. New research shows that the majority of children and teenagers are not the Web-savvy digital natives of legend. In fact, many of them don't even know how to google properly.

HardOCP compared GeForce GTX 460 1GB SLI vs. Radeon HD 5870 CFX. In light of the GeForce GTX 460 1GB SLI providing superior gaming performance compared to Radeon HD 5850 CFX, we wanted to game the 460 SLI against AMD's Radeon HD 5870 CFX and check out performance.

Today's timewaster is Happy Wheels, a very messy physics puzzle type thing.



Wednesday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 11-August-2010  03:12:54 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Cooling:
Corsair H70 CPU Cooler on HWHeaven.
Scythe Ninja 3 & Scythe Yasya CPU Heatsinks on SilentPCReview.
Gelid Slim Silence & Prolimatech Samuel 17 Low Profile CPU Coolers on SilentPCReview.
Noctua NH-D14 CPU Cooler on HWSecrets.
Enermax T.B.SILENCE 14cm Fan on RBMods.
Antec Notebook Coolers Triple Treat - Basic, Mini, and Designer on PCPerspective.
Corsair A50 on NeoSeeker.
Arctic Cooling Accelero XTREME 5970 VGA Cooler on XBitLabs.
SilverStone SST-AP181 Air Penetrator Fan on BenchmarkReviews.
Prolimatech Armageddon CPU cooler on OC3D.
Antec Notebook Cooler Basic on ASELabs.
Zalman CNPS 10X Performa CPU Cooler on HWSecrets.
Corsair H70 all-in-one CPU watercooler on OC3D.

Audio Visual:
Dell U2211H 21.5-inch LCD Monitor on Tweaktown.
Arctic Sound E352 Wood Enclosed Headphone on LegitReviews.
Head-Direct HiFiMAN RE-ZERO In-ears on TechPowerUp.

Input Etc:
Cooler Master Storm Inferno Gaming Mouse on NeoSeeker.
Apple Magic Trackpad on DigitalTrends.

Memory:
G.Skill Flare DDR3 2000 MHZ C7 AMD kit on Guru3D.
Adata XPG DDR3-2200 4GB Gaming Memory Kits on FunkyKit.
Patriot Viper II Sector 5 2400MHz 4GB Kit on Bjorn3D.

Power Supply:
SilverStone Strider Plus 600W on OCIA.
Cooler Master Silent Pro Gold 1000W on APHNetworks.
Sparkle Gold Class Series 1000W on OCOnline.

Misc:
Epson B-510DN Business Color Ink Jet Printer on TestFreaks.
ASUS USB-N13 802.11n Adapter on Tweaktown.



Wednesday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 10-August-2010  16:03:08 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Motherboards:
Gigabyte GA-X58-UD9 LGA1366 board on PureOC.
MSI P55a Fuzion LGA1156 board on OC3D.
GIGABYTE's H55N-USB3 Mini-ITX Motherboard Loaded Up on Tweaktown.
Asus LGA1156 P7P55D-E Pro on HotHardware.
ASUS P6X58D-E LGA1366 board on OCClub.
ASRock 880G Extreme3 & 890FX Deluxe3 AM3 boards on Phoronix.

Video Cards:
ASUS Matrix 5870 Platinum on TBreak.
ASUS ENGTX460 DirectCU TOP/2DI/1GD5 on BenchmarkReviews.
PowerColor 5770 PCS+ Vortex on OCClub.
Sapphire Radeon HD 5670 Ultimate on Pro-Clockers.
HIS HD 5550 & 5570 "Silence" Graphics Cards on SilentPCReview.
MSI GeForce GTX 460 768MB Cyclone in SLI Overclocked on Tweaktown.

Cases:
Cooler Master HAF 932 Black Edition on LegitReviews.
Thermaltake Armor A90 Mid-Tower on Techgage.
NZXT Hades Mid Tower on Modders-Inc.

Storage:
Patriot Inferno 100GB SandForce SF-1200 SSD on LegitReviews.
Verbatim Titan XS 320GB Portable Hard Drive on ASELabs.
Seagate FreeAgent Go 1TB and 640GB portable USB drives on SilentPCReview.
Super Talent SuperCrypt 32GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive on Tweaktown.
Synology DiskStation DS210+ Network Storage Server on CCEReviews.
Siig SuperSpeed USB 3.0 to SATA 3Gb/s 2.5" Enclosure on TestFreaks.
Crucial C300 256GB SSD on PureOC.
ADATA Superior Series C905 USB Flash Drive on MadShrimps.



IT and Communications Debate (5 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 10-August-2010  02:16:31 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Carby and Scott sent this in, which kicks off in under an hour:

Australian Greens communications spokesperson, Senator Scott Ludlam, will debate Federal Communications Minister Stephen Conroy and Shadow spokesperson Tony Smith at the National Press Club in Canberra.

The debate will allow each of main political parties to outline their positions and priorities on IT and communications ahead of the August 21 federal election.

Technology-Powering our Economic Future ICT Policy Forum has been organised by The Australian Computer Society and will be moderated by Sky News political editor David Speers.

The event will begin at 12:55pm AEST, and run through to 2:05 pm AEST.


It'll be streamed live on YouTube on their Australia Votes page, and there's more info here on the ACS website.

Discussion here.



Monday Evening (26 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 9-August-2010  07:58:07 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Malcolm Turnbull has apparently claimed most of Australia doesn't want 100Mbps internet. “The reality is, there simply isn’t demand at the household and every small business level for Internet at that speed, at a price which would make it even remotely financially viable,” the former Opposition Leader told a forum he convened in Sydney to discuss Labor’s mandatory Internet filter policy. But Computerworld think the numbers say otherwise.

One election issue we haven't heard much about is the R18+ rating for video games. With the Federal Election just a fortnight away, Gamespot quizzed the Labor Party, the Liberal/National Coalition and the Australian Greens on a range of topics close to the heart of gamers around the country. When it came to reforming our classification system, only the Greens declared unequivocal support for the introduction of an R18+ rating for games.

The CEO of HP has resigned amid scandals. According to SEC filings, Hurd has made more than $125 million from HP since joining the company in 2005. He's also made quite a bit of money for HP: the share price of the company has jumped from $21.71 on April 1, 2005—Hurd's first day as HP CEO--to $41.85 at the close of business (and his tenure) Friday.

Mozilla's Firefox will silently update itself from version 4. The move takes a page from Google Chrome, which uses an automated updater that runs in the background. Chrome's auto-update strategy has meant that 97 percent of Chrome users are running the most up-to-date version of the browser within three weeks of an update's release, a number Mozilla may be shooting for.

Australian pricing for the long-awaited Gran Turismo 5 has been revealed. There's 3 options and you can spend $299 if you want to get a pile of goodies with it.

A journalist has had a sneak preview of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighters Australia will be recieving in 2015. They're calling it almost uncrashable thanks to a new technology. Current systems are simply based on terrain awareness and warnings which alert pilots of impending collisions. The big difference is that Auto-GCAS actually wrests control off the pilot and takes evasive action. Hrm, hopefully that's not like the Titanic being almost unsinkable..



Photography Gallery (2 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 8-August-2010  16:12:25 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Here's some recent photos from our Photography Gallery forum.

















Also Nismor31 sends word that OCAU Iron Photographer voting is now open for July's entries. The theme was "OOF".



Monday Morning (3 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 8-August-2010  14:26:52 (GMT +10) - by Agg

If you're catching a CityRail train in Sydney today, note that you won't need a ticket, thanks d00dz. The unions have notified RailCorp there will be a 24 hour ban on ticket selling, fare collection and fare enforcement across the CityRail network on Monday 9 August. As a result, customers are being advised that using a valid ticket will not be enforced on CityRail services on Monday, however bus and ferry services still require a ticket.

Tuesday will be a big day for Microsoft patches - the biggest ever Patch Tuesday. Microsoft is planning to release 14 security bulletins Aug. 10 for Patch Tuesday—the company's highest total ever. The bulletins will cover 34 vulnerabilities across multiple products, including Windows, Internet Explorer, Silverlight and Microsoft Office.

Chris spotted that Civilization Revolution for iPhone is free for a limited time. Civilization Revolution in Collaboration with The New FAAD GOLD App will Be Free For A Limited Time. Discussion here. Speaking of which, there's a try before you buy feature in the App Store now. Sounds like it just collects demos and "lite" versions together rather than being a proper timed trial of the full app.

Gizmodo have a video from EFA showing five ways to defeat the filter in under two minutes. We object to the Government’s plan to censor the internet for a variety of reasons – it won’t help parents, it won’t help police, it’s secretive, it costs a lot of money. Perhaps these points are debatable, but one isn’t – experts agree, anybody who wants to will be able to get around the censorwall, easily, on day one.

YouTube have quite a clever trailer for the Expendables movie. Looks like they're trotting out all the classic action stars for this one. :)

RamblingThoughts checked out FetchTV. Many Australians who get broadband internet access through Internet Service Providers (ISPs) like Internode and iiNet will be watching Pay TV channels as well as Video on Demand movies and TV shows via their broadband internet connection within the next few months.



Sunday Afternoon Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 8-August-2010  05:31:59 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Portable & Prebuilt:
Alienware M11x R2 laptop on HWHeaven.
Puget Systems Serenity SPCR Edition Ultra Quiet Gaming PC on PCPerspective.
Motorola Droid X vs. Samsung Fascinate (Galaxy S) smartphones on DigitalTrends.
ASRock Core 100HT-BD HTPC (Intel Core i3) on Tweaktown.
Nextar M3-03 3.5" Touchscreen GPS on iGadgetLife.

Storage:
Super Talent Express USB 3.0 Flash Drive on EverythingUSB.
Mushkin Callisto Deluxe 120GB Solid State Drive on Tweaktown.
Crucial RealSSD C300 64GB on ITShootout.
G.SKILL Phoenix Pro 240 GB SSD on TechPowerUp.
iStar BPU-124V2-SS Hot-Swap Backplane RAID Cage on DragonSteelMods.
Patriot Gauntlet USB 3.0 2.5 HDD Enclosure PCGT25S on TestFreaks.

Input Etc:
Mad Catz Cyborg RAT-7 Laser Gaming Mouse on BenchmarkReviews.
CM Storm Inferno Gaming Mouse on Techgage.
Razer Imperator & Razer Vespula mice on Bjorn3D.
Apple Magic Trackpad on HotHardware.

Video Cards:
ASUS Matrix 5870 Platinum on Overclockers.com.
EVGA GTX 460 SuperClocked 1GB on NinjaLane.
Axle GeForce GTX 460 768MB on Guru3D.
Sapphire 5970 Toxic on OC3D.
AMD Radeon HD 4250 880G On Linux on Phoronix.

Cases:
Coolermaster CM 690 II Advanced on RBMods.
SilverStone Sugo SG07 Mini ITX on PureOC.
SilverStone Sugo SG07 on HWSecrets.

Motherboard & CPU:
Gigabyte H55N-USB 3.0 ITX Socket 1156 on Pro-Clockers.
ASRock P55 Extreme4 LGA1156 board on HWSecrets.
Asus AT3IONT-I Deluxe Atom/ION HTPC board on NeoSeeker.
ASUS M4A88TD-V EVO/USB3 and Biostar TA880G HD AM3 boards on InsideHW.

Audio Visual:
Sonance Sonamp 275 SE 2-channel amp on DigitalTrends.
ASUS Xonar DS 7.1 Audio Card on PureOC.
Viewsonic VA2323wm 23 Inch Widescreen LCD Monitor on BigBruin.
HIS Multi-View 2 USB Adaptor on FunkyKit.
Jays a-Jays Three earphones on DigitalTrends.

Misc:
Edimax AR-7284WnA Router on XSReviews.
StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty game on YouGamers.
Cooler Master GX 750W PSU on Tweaktown.
CoolIT Systems Omni A.L.C. Universal GPU Cooling System on FutureLooks.
G.Skill Flare F3-16000CL7D-4GBFLS memory on OCClub.



Misc Pics (41 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 6-August-2010  04:33:37 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Another bumper issue this week:






And if you're after more, check out this Wiki page which lists ALL "misc pics" news posts from the archive.



Sponsor Specials (0 Comments) (link)
 Friday, 6-August-2010  04:10:03 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Remember to keep an eye on our Sponsor Specials Forum if you're shopping around. In there our various sponsors have specials and info on Solid State Drives, Colognes/Perfumes, Office Chairs, ISP Cash-Backs, Headphones, Clicky Keyboards, iPad Accessories, Amps and Speakers, LCD Monitors, Web Hosting, more Web Hosting and a heap of other goodies. Check 'em out!


Friday Morning (6 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 5-August-2010  17:36:04 (GMT +10) - by Agg

We haven't mentioned Folding@Home for a while, but Sniper sent in this article about which video card is best for Folding. In case you've been out of the loop for a while, the real grunt work of Folding is being done by GPU clients nowadays. As it's taken quite a while for Stanford to perfect the GPU3 client and for Nvidia to provide a stable driver for its Fermi-based cards, we thought it worth taking a look at how the new batch of cards perform when folding. Remember, OCAU is Team 24 in folding. Discussion here.

Also on Folding, it seems that sometimes gamers beat algorithms at solving problems. Scientists have turned to games for a variety of reasons, having studied virtual epidemics and tracked online communities and behavior, or simply used games to drum up excitement for the science. But this may be the first time that the gamers played an active role in producing the results, having solved problems in protein structure through the Foldit game.

Algorithms and bots seem to be doing strange things on the stockmarket, though. Unknown entities for unknown reasons are sending thousands of orders a second through the electronic stock exchanges with no intent to actually trade. Often, the buy or sell prices that they are offering are so far from the market price that there's no way they'd ever be part of a trade. The bots sketch out odd patterns with their orders, leaving patterns in the data that are largely invisible to market participants.

HotHardware are building what might be the ultimate performance PC. On the pages ahead, not only will we be checking out the EVGA Classified SR-2, but we’ll be showcasing a pair of the most powerful processors currently on the market, along with the only 6-Channel CAS 6 memory kit available and an as-yet-to-be released case capable of housing it all. The end result is arguably the most powerful foundation for desktop PC platform an enthusiast could wish for to date.

Google have dropped Google Wave. I have to admit I never really looked into it, and it seems I wasn't alone. “Wave has not seen the user adoption we would have liked,” wrote Urs Hölzle, Google senior vice president for operations, in a blog post. As a result of the public indifference, “We don’t plan to continue developing Wave as a stand-alone product,” he said.

A former Chi Mei executive has admitted being involved with LCD screen price fixing. Chen-Lung Kuo, a former director of sales at the Taiwan-based Chi Mei, conspired with executives at other LCD manufacturers to suppress and eliminate competition by fixing TFT-LCD prices, the DOJ said in a one-count felony charge filed in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in San Francisco. Kuo participated in the conspiracy from about April 2004 to December 2006, the DOJ said in a press release.

Jaw174 sent in this article about mobile phone CPUs. 1GHz processors on high-end handsets are all the rage now, but 1.5GHz puppies with more than one core have finished sampling and are being shipped to manufacturers. These are already desktop clock speeds, but how much is enough?

GamePron have a gaming news vidcast. The first edition of GamePron News has been prepared for your viewing pleasure, covering such things as the StarCraft II launch, Richard Garriott and his lawsuit victory, outlawed R4 cartridges, Adelaide’s AVcon and the fuss over a dancing zombie.

The Coalition have declared they would not support mandatory internet filtering, a stance that Senator Conroy has asked them to explain. Shadow Communications Minister Tony Smith tonight said a Coalition Government would not introduce a mandatory ISP filter – instead it would implement what he described as “practical and effective measures to enhance online safety and security” – including returning to the PC-based filtering approach utilised by the previous Howard Coalition government. But Conroy’s office immediately challenged such a proposal. Discussion here.



Friday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Thursday, 5-August-2010  16:52:51 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Input Etc:
Cooler Master Storm Inferno Gaming Laser Mouse on ASELabs.
Cooler Master Inferno mouse on OCClub.
Cooler Master Storm Inferno Gaming Mouse on PureOC.

Power Supply:
NZXT HALE90 Modular Power Supply on TechWareHouse.
Choiix Power Fort portable charger on OCIA.
Choiix Power Fort on BurnedIn.
Corsair AX1200 PSU on HWHeaven.

Portable & Prebuilt:
Zotac ZBOX HD-ID11 ION based HTPC on InsideHW.
Samsung R780 17-Inch Core i5 Notebook on Futurelooks.
BlackBerry Torch 9800 smartphone on DigitalTrends.

Storage:
Buffalo Linkstation Pro (2TB) on TechWareHouse.
Samsung Spinpoint F4 320GB HDD on TestFreaks.

Video Cards:
MSI GeForce GTX 460 768MB Cyclone in SLI on Tweaktown.
MSI N480GTX M2D15 GeForce GTX 480 on PCPerspective.
PowerColor Power Jack on NeoSeeker.
MSI N460GTX Cyclone 768D5/OC on HWSecrets.
PowerColor 5750 Go! Green & Gigabyte 5750 Silent Cell on HWHeaven.

Misc:
SilverStone Fortress FT02 case on BenchmarkReviews.
Canon EOS 550D DSLR camera on TBreak.
ASRock 870 Extreme3 AM3 motherboard on Tweaktown.



Thursday Morning (1 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 4-August-2010  18:08:40 (GMT +10) - by Agg

AMD have a new Bulldozer Blog detailing their upcoming core architecture. Just to make sure that everyone is up to speed on what Bulldozer is — a brand new design featuring up to 8 cores for client products and up to 16 cores for server products. Bulldozer will feature a new floating point unit that can support up to 256-bit floating point execution, which will boost the performance for technical applications that rely on floating point math. Bulldozer discussion continues here.

DigitalTrends checked out three of the new generation smartphones. With the arrival of a new messiah phone from Cupertino (Apple iPhone 4, $200 on AT&T), the very first 4G phone in the U.S. (HTC Evo 4G, $200 on Sprint), and the fastest Android device on the market (Samsung Captivate, $200 on AT&T), smartphone buyers have never faced a better slate of options - or a more confusing one.

Possibly old news now with patches etc, but a bug in StarCraft II could melt your video card. The glitch reportedly manifests when those playing the game access screens with scant detail, such as menus; this leads to extremely rapid refresh rates which can excessively tax your hardware. Hrm, sounds a bit strange. Meanwhile ATI people can use anti-aliasing now.

Corsair have announced the replacement for their popular Hydro H50 cooler, the Hydro H70. The Hydro Series H70 CPU cooler is an evolution of the award-winning Hydro Series H50, with several significant upgrades that enable it to deliver even greater cooling performance. These upgrades include a double-thickness (50mm) radiator with higher heat-exchanging capacity and a pump/cold plate unit with increased efficiency. The H70 also features two 120mm speed-switchable cooling fans in a push-pull configuration to provide increased airflow at low noise levels. There's an unboxing here on HardOCP, and discussion here.

The AFACT vs iiNet appeal continues, but one judge wonders what the point is. Justice Emmett stressed, at this point, it seemed there was nothing the Court could do to resolve the fundamental matter of who should be responsible for dealing with copyright breeches.

Iceickle sent in this interesting article about an Aussie alien hunter. What you have to do is use another program to extract that signal out of that noise. Well, after we did that, we found this very sharp signal, sort of a laser lookalike thing which is the sort of thing we’re looking for—a very sharp spike. And that is what we found. So that was the excitement about the whole thing.

Today's timewaster is the web version of the UK quiz TV show Mastermind. The quiz is made up of two rounds and each contender answers questions on his/her chosen specialist round and on general knowledge. Both rounds each last for two minutes.



Thursday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Wednesday, 4-August-2010  14:46:00 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Input Etc:
CM Storm Inferno Laser Gaming Mouse on BenchmarkReviews.
Rosewill RK-V1TP Wireless Keyboard on HWSecrets.

Audio Visual:
HP De-branded
25-inch HD Widescreen LCD Monitor
on ThinkComputers.
Samsung 46" Series 5 LED TV 46C5000 on CCEReviews.
Choiix Boomboom Slim Travel Speaker on BurnedIn.

Cooling:
NZXT Sentry 2 LXE Fan Controller on OC3D.
Noctua NH-D14 CPU cooler on FunkyKit.
Alpenfohn Matterhorn and Deep Cool Gamer Storm CPU Coolers on XBitLabs.
Thermaltake Silent 1156 CPU Cooler on HWSecrets.

Power Supply:
OCZ StealthXstream 2 600W on Guru3D.
Thermaltake Toughpower Grand Series on LegionHW.

Video Cards:
Gigabyte GTX-460 768MB on Bjorn3D.
Asus EAH5670 HD 5670 1GB on Tweaknews.
AMD ATI RADEON HD 5670 1GB GDDR5 on MadShrimps.

Cases:
NZXT Phantom Enthusiast Full Tower on Tweaktown.
NZXT Vulcan Micro-ATX on PCPerspective.
Thermaltake Armor A90 ATX Gaming Chassis on FutureLooks.
Thermaltake Element V on OCOnline.
NZXT Vulcan on HWHeaven.

Storage:
G.Skill Phoenix Pro 120GB High 4K IOPS Solid State Drive on Tweaktown.
OWC Mercury Extreme Pro 120GB SSD on PureOC.
Seagate FreeAgent GoFlex Desk 3TB External Hard Drive on BigBruin.
OCZ Agility 2 SSD 60GB on NeoSeeker.
Synology DiskStation DS210+ NAS on XbitLabs.
Samsung SH-B123L 12X BD-Rom/DVD Writer on TestFreaks.
OCZ 60GB Agility 2 SATA II Solid State Drive on OCIA.

Misc:
TRENDnet 24-port 10/100Mbps TE100-s24g GREENnet switch on TechWareLabs.
RIM BlackBerry Torch 9800 smartphone on TechReviewSource.
ASUS Rampage III Extreme LGA1366 motherboard on OCClub.



Diatec Filco Majestouch Keyboard (17 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 3-August-2010  17:02:15 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Manaz has checked out the wordily-named Diatec Filco Majestouch keyboard, and along the way, tells us quite a lot about how keyboards work:


Click for the review!



Wednesday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Tuesday, 3-August-2010  16:24:00 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Motherboard & CPU:
ASUS Z8NA-D6C (Intel 5500) on Tweaktown.
ASRock 890GX Extreme3 AM3 board on iXBTLabs.

Audio Visual:
Choiix Boom Boom Portable Speaker on Pro-Clockers.
Choiix Boom Boom Portable Speaker on ASELabs.
Choiix Boom Boom Slim Travel Speaker on Tweaktown.
Ear Force X11 headphones on GamingNexus.
Eagle Tech ET-AR508LR-BK Stereo Speaker on Bjorn3D.
Choiix Boom Boom Portable Speaker on OCClub.
Choiix Boom Boom Portable Speaker on NeoSeeker.
Siig SoundWave Sphere Speaker on iGadgetLife.

Cooling:
Arctic Cooling Breeze Mobile Fan on TechPowerUp.
Koolance CPU-LN2-V2 Liquid Nitrogen Pot on PureOC.

Video Cards:
Gigabyte X58A-UD9 and GTX480 Quad Sli on OC3D.
ASUS GeForce GTX 460 SLI Performance on BenchmarkReviews.
Sapphires HD 5830 1GB and MSIs GTX 460 768MB Cyclone on Tweaktown.
ASUS ENGTX 460 1GB on TBreak.



Tuesday Morning (16 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 2-August-2010  16:59:59 (GMT +10) - by Agg

I just noticed we have a big StarCraft II Wiki page now, full of handy info. Australians who purchase an Australian, New Zealand or SEA (South East Asia) copy of Starcraft II will eventually have access to both the SEA (South East Asia) and NA (North American) Servers. Currently however, they only have access to the SEA servers.

Sniper spotted this ISP satisfaction report which was released recently. According to the latest Roy Morgan Internet Satisfaction data, Internode (93.4%) is still the top performer for customer satisfaction while iiNet (89.9%) appears to be closing the gap from 5.6% points in the 6 months to April 2010 to 3.5% points in the 6 months to May 2010. Westnet (83.0%) and TPG Internet (79.7%) are in third and fourth place in customer satisfaction. Telstra BigPond (65.8%) has seen a marginal increase in satisfaction rating bringing its performance to be just ahead of lower ranked dodo (65.5%) but well behind its major competitor Optusnet (77.1%).

HotHardware have an X58 motherboard roundup. Join us as we take a look at what the latest developments on the X58 market are; in a selection of tests including video encoding, SATA3/USB3 performance and overclocking we will discover which boards offer the best for each consumer.

ArsTechnica report on NBN reluctance during the first rollouts. The government-created NBN Co. has the right to dig up streets and trench along rights-of-way, but to install that "last-mile" connection to a home or apartment it needs permission - and Tasmanians have been slow to offer it.

PugetSystems have a Mineral Oil Fishtank Computer available as a commercial product. Puget Systems is pleased to be offering "do it yourself" kits for our V3 aquarium computer. Puget Systems has been running a mineral oil computer for years with no ill effects. The V3 Kit has allowed us to run an extremely high end system, pulling 820W from the wall at load, at around a maximum of 60C with virtually no noise.

It seems trolling can land you in hot water, with a Queensland woman being charged for defacing a Facebook memorial page. A MAGISTRATE has warned online trolls the "heavy hand of the law will come down on you" if disturbing material is posted on social networking sites.

Ashley and Paul spotted an ATM hacker at DefCon. More here. Besides ordering it to spit out money, attackers can silently harvest account data from anyone who uses the machines. It also affects more than just the standalone ATMs vulnerable to the physical attack; the method could potentially be used against the kinds of ATMs used by mainstream banks.

Ben sent word of a Hover Bike designed and built in Australia. Looks like it uses a BMW motorcycle engine and two giant fans. Do you need to have a pilots license to fly the Hoverbike? Having previous experience in a helicopter or plane would be a great help. That said, this is a new way to fly and one would need to learn to ride the hoverbike in much the same manner as a helicopter or riding a motorcycle.

Gizmodo have a lengthy article from an Australian Sex Party representative detailing the role of classification and internet censorship in the upcoming election. When was the last time someone went to jail in Australia for a censorship crime? 1870? 1926? 1947? Try... May, 2010.

Google have a map showing spam sources in real time. Each red dot on this map shows where spam messages are originating in real time. Saturated areas show high concentrations of malicious IPs. It surprised me to see how much of Italy, France and Spain is represented. I thought lots more would be in Russia and China, but I guess there's large areas there which are not hooked up to the net yet.

Today's timewaster is Devil's Tuning Fork, from Tzorst.



Tuesday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 2-August-2010  16:28:55 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Storage:
OCZ Agility 2 60GB Solid State Drive on ThinkComputers.
SIIG 4-port SuperSpeed USB 3.0 Hub on EverythingUSB.
Crucial RealSSD C300 128GB 6Gbps Solid State Drive on BigBruin.
OCZ Vertex 2 SSD on OC3D.
Seagate FreeAgent GoFlex Desk (1TB) on TechReviewSource.
Patriot Inferno 100GB SSD on Overclockers.com.

Video Cards:
Inno3D GeForce GTX 460 OC on Guru3D.
HIS Silence Radeon HD 5570 on Tweaknews.
Gigabyte Geforce GTX 460 OC 1GB on FunkyKit.
ASUS EAH5850 and 5850TOP in Crossfire on LostCircuits.

Input Etc:
Logitech MK 710 mouse and keyboard on InsideHW.
Verbatim Nano Wireless Notebook Laser Mouse on ASELabs.

Cooling:
Enzotech Stealth CPU Water Block on PureOC.
NZXT Sentry LXE External Touchscreen Fan Controller video review on PCPerspective.
ARCTIC Breeze Pro & ARCTIC Breeze Mobile USB Fans on APHNetworks.
CoolIT Systems Vantage A.L.C. CPU Cooler on Tweaktown.

Portable:
HTC EVO 4G Android SmartPhone on BenchmarkReviews.
Motorola Droid X on HotHardware.

Misc:
StarTech - Computer Service Tool Kit on ComputingOnDemand.
Patriot Viper II Sector 7 PC3 14400 CAS 9 6GB on OCClub.
An In-Depth Look at openSUSE 11.3 on Techgage.
Logitech Z520 Desktop Computer Speakers on APHNetworks.



Monday Morning Reviews (0 Comments) (link)
 Monday, 2-August-2010  02:27:51 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Portable & Prebuilt:
eMachines ER1402-05 on TechReviewSource.
CoolerMaster NotePal ErgoStand on BurnedIn.

Video Cards:
MSI GTX-465 Twin Frozr II on Bjorn3D.
MSI GeForce GTX 460 1GB Cyclone on Tweaktown.
Galaxy GeForce GTX 460 GC 1GB on PCPerspective.
Nvidia Quadro 5000 Professional Graphics Card on XbitLabs.

Case:
NZXT Vulcan on Overclockers.com.
Lian Li PC-T60 ATX Test Bench on Phoronix.
NZXT Phantom on HWSecrets.

Memory & Storage:
Samsung SE-S084D Super WriteMaster Slim External DVD Writer on TestFreaks.
iStar BPU-2535v2 HDD-SSD 2.5" to 3.5" Adapter on OCIA.
How safe is the ioSafe External Hard Drive? on Choice.

Misc:
ASUS RT-N16 Multi-Functional Gigabit Wireless N Router on Tweaktown.
MacSpeech Scribe text to speech on TestFreaks.



Geek Food (1 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 1-August-2010  09:55:23 (GMT +10) - by Agg

Here's some yummy things from our Geek Food forum:


Azrael has been
baking sourdough

Baked Beans
by kingjam

Pork Loin
by kingjam


French Onion Soup
by scon

Chicken & Sausage Gumbo
by Flecktone

Butter Chicken Pie
by Bambi_1319


Cupcakes
by Bambi_1319

Mexican Fusion
by miicah

Walnut Brownies
by AusScare



Sunday Afternoon (0 Comments) (link)
 Sunday, 1-August-2010  03:16:09 (GMT +10) - by Agg

SOGC are holding a free LAN in Sydney next weekend. We're holding a free LAN Party to say thank you to all our supporters and gamers, as well as saying goodbye to our old venue at the North Sydney ANZAC Memorial Club (Anzac ave, Cammeray, NSW, 2062). All the gamers need to do is bring their PCs, we provide powerboards, and network cabling! All they need to do is bring themselves and get ready for some awesome gaming with some great prizes too!

iiNet have confirmed they will be buying AAPT's consumer division for $60M AUD. The expanded customer base means iiNet will exceed Optus in the total number of DSL subscribers it has, bringing it to the second largest ISP for ADSL2+, behind Telstra's 2,244,000 subscribers. Optus remains the second largest ISP in Australia due to its hybrid fibre coaxial (HFC) network which it offers to broadband customers alongside DSL products.

Meanwhile AFACT's appeal vs iiNet will be heard this week. AFACT failed in its initial bid to hold the Perth-based ISP responsible for the alleged film piracy occurring on its network when the Court ruled in favour of iiNet in February. The anti-piracy group then appealed the decision. The appeals hearing will be held in front of the Full Federal Court on August 2.

ACMA have approved in-flight mobile phone use in Australian airspace. The regulator expected airlines to use in-flight carriers such as AeroMobile and OnAir, which have carrier licences under the Australian Telecommunications Act. iTnews believed the regulator was consulting with the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on the use of terrestrial networks in-flight, although such technology was yet to be trialled.

Chris spotted that The Sims 2 Double Deluxe is free on the EA Store at the moment. You'll need to sign up for an EA downloader account if you don't already have one. I don't expect this to last long so don't put it off for "later" if you don't want to miss out. Discussion here.

An experimental game controller uses hot and cold sensations to add to the experience of an environment. Based on the Peltier effect, these solid-state devices are easy to incorporate into objects of reasonable size, i.e. video game controllers. In this configuration, just announced at the 2010 SIGGRAPH conference, a pair of thermoelectric surfaces on either side of a controller rapidly heat up or cool down in order to simulate appropriate conditions in a virtual environment.

XbitLabs have a AMD 890FX AM3 motherboard roundup. Today we are going to talk about six mainboards on AMD 890FX chipset, namely: ASRock 890FX Deluxe3, Asus M4A89TD Pro and Asus M4A89TD Pro/USB3, Biostar TA890FXE, Gigabyte GA-890FXA-UD5 and MSI 890FXA-GD70. We will compare their technical specifications, BIOS functionality, overclocking potential; will check out their performance and power consumption.

YouTube have raised the video limit to 15 minutes. Joshua Siegel, a YouTube product manager, said in a blog post that increasing the time limit had been the "number one requested feature" by contributors to the wildly popular video-sharing site.

Hackers at DefCon have been socially engineering big companies with great success. A first-ever "social engineering'' contest challenges hackers to call workers at 10 companies including technology titans Google, Apple, Cisco, and Microsoft and get them to reveal too much information to strangers.

Shadow communications minister Tony Smith will debate Conroy and Ludlam on the 10th of August. It is understood that Conroy and Ludlam agreed some time ago to the debate, but Smith was reticent in responding to the invite from the Australian Computer Society (ACS). Each speaker will be given a chance to outline their stance on ICT issues and will then participate in a Q&A session. Discussion here.



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